by Kate Evans
Saturday’s Morgan County Expo is featuring a variety of 4-H member projects on display at Hunter’s Hardware this week. The most popular 4-H project was the “Choose Your Own” project, said West Virginia University Morgan County Extension Agent Cindy Smalley.
Some of those 4-H projects included research on fashion through the ages, research on anxiety in youth athletes and exercise, Smalley said. Usually she has a number of photography projects and around 10 cooking projects, but there was only one of each this year. Smalley had two Cloverbuds that did bug collecting.
Smalley had one 4-H animal project this year and it was on pigs. She’s been getting a lot of calls about it and interest from volunteers that want to be trained on helping kids learn to show their animals, which is part of the project.
Morgan County 4-H participation fell off a lot during the COVID pandemic, but membership is back up to 70 members, Smalley said. There is a new 4-H club that started meeting in Paw Paw in the last few months that’s still deciding on their name.
The Settlers 4-H Club in Berkeley Springs, the Explorers 4-H Club in Greenwood and the Tuscarorians 4-H Club in Great Cacapon continue to meet. Smalley said she is anticipating several new 4-H Clubs to be starting up in September. She’s currently getting volunteers trained to do the clubs, which is exciting for her.
Special interest clubs
There are community 4-H Clubs like the Settlers and others, but there are also 4-H special interest clubs. These meet for short sessions as opposed to the monthly meetings that the community 4-H clubs have, Smalley said.
Special interest 4-H clubs in Morgan County include the air rifle club and robotics. Smalley is also looking at starting a Legos club.
Smalley said that the air rifle club met early this spring to practice, but they weren’t able to compete. Around 15 kids participated. Her goal is to start the air rifle club by October so kids can compete in the regionals next year. Smalley also plans to start up the robotics club.
4-H activities this year have included snow tubing and a spring trip to Gettysburg. Smalley was happy they were able to do their annual spring trip.
Smalley said this year is a transition year for 4-H as they’re trying to start over. Things are coming together with new members joining and new volunteers coming on board.
For more information about Morgan County 4-H call Smalley at 304-258-8400.