It is not a true summer unless you make it to the La Plata County Fair. The fair is a celebration of what makes our little part of the world so special.
Being a 4-H Youth Development extension agent, I get a great inside look at all the hard work that goes into preparing for the fair. This hard work shows off the power of our community. It educates our young people about the important life lessons of dedication and commitment. In addition, it highlights the young talents of our community.
The 4-H vision is a world in which youth and adults learn, grow and work together as catalysts for positive change. The fair gives our youths a firsthand experience in community development. They get to see fair board directors, fairground employees, fair superintendents, fair royalty, judges, 4-H leaders and countless other volunteers working together to make the fair a success. In addition, they get to see the outpouring of community support through business sponsorships, 4-H award sponsorships, Silver Stake Award Donators, Junior Livestock Auction Buyers and Catch-It Sponsors. This is a good sign that our community cares about our young people and wants them to keep the rich traditions and character of our area healthy for future generations.
The county fair gives our 4-H members a time to shine.
Throughout the last year, new members have been able to create friendships in the 4-H program and learn about a project, or projects, that interest them. Older members have been able to fine-tune their skills in continuing projects and also add additional projects of interest.
All members throughout the year have gained life development skills through their club’s commitment to community service and leadership. It is truly amazing to see the growth a 4-H member makes each year.
The fair is also a great opportunity for our community to support and encourage the next farmers and ranchers in our area. Many 4-H members throughout the year are gaining essential skills in animal husbandry and positive land stewardship.
The county fair also will show the wide variety of projects our youths are involved in. Many might think 4-H is only about livestock projects, however, you might be surprised by the diversity of projects and leadership opportunities 4-H has to offer. Each year, national, state and county programs are adding more focus on science, technology, engineering and mathematics to 4-H projects to better equip our youths for the future.
Please contact me with any inquires about the variety of 4-H projects to get involved in.
New this year will be a corn shucking contest and a pie eating contest that will held next Thursday night, with winners receiving special awards. In addition, please remember to get your tickets for the barbecue that will be held from noon to 5:30 p.m. Aug. 14 at the lawn of the senior center with all proceeds going to La Plata County 4-H.
We kindly appreciate your support and look forward to keeping 4-H a positive light in the La Plata County community.
FelsenGH@co.laplata.co.us or 382-6463. Greg Felsen is 4-H youth development extension agent for the La Plata County Extension Office.