by Lisa Tome
Staff from Maryland Extension worked last week to spread awareness about 4-H programs in Cecil County.
A recruiting and project night was held recently.
"We are very much alive and well. We have one of the bigger, active groups in the state with 25 clubs," said Cara Barnhardt, a 4-H assistant.
Across the county, prior to signing on new recruits, Cecil has 468 youths enrolled in 4-H. There are 284 adult volunteers who assist with programs.
There are clubs in Warwick, Calvert, Earleville, Rising Sun, Fair Hill, Elkton, Chesapeake City, Port Deposit, and North East.
"We're not just cows anymore," said Barnhardt. "We have robotics and engineering. The big push is to bring STEM into 4-H. We also have photography and entrepreneurship."
There is an Elkton-based archery club, a junior council for teens 14 and over, a robotics club in Elkton and Rising Sun, and a shotgun club nearby in Oxford, Pa. There are general clubs, clover clubs for the young, horse clubs, livestock clubs, a dog club, technology clubs, dairy clubs, and a rabbit club.
To sign up for 4-H, children must be between the ages of 8-18. Clover buds are for those 5-8.
"It's growing. We added a new club this year," said Barnhardt.
Among the oldest clubs in the county is the Calvert Boys & Girls Club group. That 4-H Club is geared up to celebrate 75 years of head, heart, hands, and health (the 4-H motto) in two years.
One of the main focal points locally for 4-H is participating in the Cecil County Fair. You may join 4-H at anytime during the year, but you must register by May 1 each year to qualify for fair entries.
It costs $10 per year to be a member of 4-H. Individual clubs may require additional dues and fees. There are no uniforms, but some clubs have t-shirts.
For more information about joining 4-H call 410-996-5280.