Farmer/Rancher Appreciation Day for National 4-H week
(left to right) Kaycee Crimmins, Sarah Crimmins, and Sydney Crimmins [Photo: submitted]
With the new 4-H year kicking off in September, the month of October has been a busy one for 4-H in general!! We celebrated the 2022 National 4-H Week, October 2-8th and also held the Sheridan County 4-H Awards Banquet.
National 4-H Week is always a great time to promote 4-H in each county. I took advantage of the week to highlight 4-H youth in our community and visit our local McClusky Public School. The 2022 National 4-H Week theme was ‘Opportunity for All’. There were some great quotes used throughout the 4-H week that holds strong in my beliefs with 4-H that I want to share with my readers.
- “Nothing should hold a kid back.”
- “Where many see challenge, kids see opportunity.”
- “More opportunity, more smiles.”
- “Talent is everywhere, opportunity is not.”
- “Opportunity isn’t about division.”
- “Opportunity shouldn’t be one-sided.”
Sheridan County had some fun activities and daily tasks going throughout the whole 4-H week. We celebrated 4-H Spirit Day on Wednesday, October 5th where youth wore 4-H shirts and gear or wore green. We showed our farmer/rancher appreciation by wearing boots and jeans to support our producers in the Agriculture industry. The Sheridan County Extension office held a coloring contest and visited the classrooms of the local elementary school where we played 4-H Bingo. Our small community members are very supportive of this special week, and the kids all enjoy the events part of it. We sparked interest in new members and ignited the passion of continuing 4-H members.
Most counties with North Dakota 4-H use the fall to celebrate and recognize their 4-H members, volunteers, and leaders for their hard work, dedication, and achievements this past 4-H year. Sheridan County 4-H held their annual awards banquet Sunday, October 16th. Every county is different and unique to their own situation and how they honor their 4-H members, leaders, and volunteers.
The 4-H banquet kicked off with a delicious meal of chicken and strudels. Our 4-H council invites our 4-H families, members, leaders, volunteers, and sponsors to this great event.
The awards presentation was kicked off by honoring our Cloverbud members. Cloverbud members are between the ages of 5 to 7 years old and in kindergarten through second grade. The primary difference between a 4-H Cloverbud and a 4-H member is that a Cloverbud engages in varied activities which focus on developing a specific skill instead of an ongoing project. We next honored our 4-H members for different milestones of membership. We honor those for 5 years of membership, 10 years and every 5 years after. The future of 4-H in Sheridan County looks to be bright and exciting with this great group of kids.
Our county 4-H volunteers and leaders are also recognized at the banquet. The dedication of adult volunteers and leaders to the 4-H youth program is the driving force behind the success of 4-H. Sheridan County is a prime example of how a small county can achieve many things by applying the motto, “many hands, make light work.” Our 4-H volunteers are recognized for their years of service as a first year, 5th year, and so forth every 5 years. It is true what they say, volunteers are the heart of 4-H. I am very appreciative of our volunteers in Sheridan County and couldn’t have a successful 4-H year without their help, knowledge, and efforts put forth.
Our 4-H members that participated in our county Achievement Days and the ND State Fair are recognized for their accomplishments. A 4-H member in Sheridan County will receive a plaque plate for each outstanding exhibit at the county, district, or state level that resulted in a grand champion, reserve champion, award of excellence, or an honorable mention. Sheridan County had seven 4-H members receiving their first plaque.
Sheridan County has a strong presence of participation in 4-H judging events held throughout the year. Judging teams that were honored at the banquet included: livestock judging, crops judging, hippology, and land judging. Our county provides a judging jacket to 4-H members who competed at their first State Judging Contest.
We also honor those 4-H members in our county who participated in the 4-H Communication Arts program either at the county, district, or state level. Communication Arts helps participants develop communication skills that are useful throughout a lifetime; provides participants an opportunity to practice their skills before a group; provides participants an opportunity to gather and organize information, present equipment and props for public presentation; develop participants’ confidence in making public presentations; and evaluate and enhance communication skills.
We completed our 4-H awards banquet with honoring our past 4-H Council President to show our appreciation and dedication to the 4-H program. A new 4-H year President was elected at the annual meeting following our banquet.
This year Sheridan County also recognized Bravera Bank as their 2021-2022 Friend of 4-H. Bravera Bank employees have supported our local Sheridan County 4-H by volunteering to assist in interview judging at our Sheridan County 4-H Achievement Days, providing financial donations, and by sponsoring the meal during the 4-H Horse Show this past year. Because of their passion and dedication as well as their support locally, they were presented this prestigious award.
This is just a small piece of what we do in 4-H in Sheridan County. This fall our county is concentrating on fundraising to help assist in the upcoming year. We will work on the 4-H “Health” component in November by organizing the Sheridan County Turkey Trot Fun Run. The “Hands” component of the 4-H pledge states, “our hands for larger service.” The 4-H members in Sheridan County also gather food within the community to donate to the local food pantry. And before you know it, the judging season will begin in February.
Remember, if this has sparked your interest as a 4-H member or volunteer be sure to contact your local NDSU Extension Office today to find out how you and/or your youth can join 4-H. It’s never too late to join.
Sarah Crimmins is originally from Northwestern Montana where she grew up with cattle and horses. Competing at her county 4-H Horse Shows and competing at Montana High School Rodeos led her to compete at the collegiate level for the Montana State Bobcats Rodeo Team. She moved to North Dakota after graduation and met her husband, Eric. They have two daughters and call McClusky, ND home, where she is the Sheridan County NDSU Extension Agent.