AMES, Iowa--4-H’ers across Iowa will celebrate National 4-H Week Oct. 7-13 with a smorgasbord of hayrides, dances, cookouts, new member enrollment and a big dollop of community service.
Statewide, 4-H youth and adult volunteers can compile as many as 100,000 hours of community service each year, according to statistics from Iowa State University Extension 4-H Youth Development, the parent program for 4-H in Iowa.
Many members, especially in central Iowa, will start the week early by cleaning and fixing up the Iowa 4-H Center in rural Boone County on Saturday, Oct. 6 during the camp’s Make a Difference Day. In eastern Iowa, Johnson County 4-H’ers will plant some shade through purchase of trees and a grant from MidAmerican Energy. Still other counties will reap the benefits of adult-4-H youth partnerships that have created a clothesline of barn quilts across Iowa. Barn quilt tours can be found in counties such as Pocahontas, Sac, Hamilton, Humboldt and Greene.
4-H’ers and their families often plan county-wide get-togethers to celebrate the week, such as a Harvest Dance for Youth in Allamakee County, a cookout and awards day in Jones County, a family fun night in Keokuk County, a Mahaska County Kidtoberfest and a Winnebago County Family Fall Festival.
Other counties have selected early to mid-October to kick off new clubs and yearly workshops or host special events. Pottawattamie (West) will offer a new International 4-H Service Learning Club; Washington will offer a new photography club; Boone begins a babysitting basics training course and Poweshiek will host an Iowa 4-H Shooting Sports National Qualifier meet.
4-H’ers also use the week to increase awareness of their clubs, such as the Page County 4-H’ers who wear club shirts on T-shirt Day, and invite friends to membership through talks in school classrooms or information on county Web sites, such as these: Adams, Appanoose, Boone, Bremer, Buena Vista, Floyd, Iowa, Jefferson, Johnson, Jones, Lee, Linn, Mills, Mitchell, Monroe, Tama, Washington and Webster.
For more information, contact your local county office of ISU Extension. See more statewide information about National 4-H Week.