Introduction to Ohio 4-H

Head, Heart, Health, Hands

Download the infographic at this link to learn more about Ohio 4-H - the largest youth development program in Ohio!

Warren County 4-H Clubs

For information about any of the 45 4-H clubs in Warren County, contact the Extension office.  

4-H Family Guide

Flip through it here -OR- Stop by the office and pick up a copy to take home.

Shining a spotlight on Warren County 4-H'ers who have gone above and beyond!

National Engineering Challenge

submitted October 12, 2015
by Eric Glaze

The National Engineering Challenge is a three day event sponsored by various organizations, including Purdue University. Delegates are selected to attend the Challenge by participating in their state 4-H competitions. There are many different categories in the competition, such as welding, rocketry, small engines and robotics, to name a few. This year, I had the amazing opportunity to attend as part of the four-person Ohio Robotics Team.

When we first found out we had been chosen for the team, none of us had experience with the VEX robotics kit, the type that was to be used at the competition. Fortunately, The Ohio State University had a VEX kit available for us to use for practice. As a result of time constraints, we were only able to get the team together to practice twice, but it was enough for us to learn the basics. We did not know what the challenge was going to be before we arrived at the competition, so we had no idea what to expect. During practice we built several robots and tried a variety of programming solutions for what we thought might be a part of the competition. We were much more prepared than we had been just a few weeks earlier, but we were still far from experts.

The last weekend of September we arrived at Purdue University for the National Engineering Challenge. There were two robotics competitions running concurrently: a remote controlled challenge and an autonomous challenge. Our team worked in pairs, with two of us working to build an autonomous robot, and the other two working to build a remote controlled robot. After the challenge details and rules were announced, each team had a day and a half to build and program their robot to complete the challenge and accumulate the most points as defined by the particular rules for that event. Initially we began slowly, but as we got into the rhythm of things we started making great progress.  Each pair constructed a chassis with the appropriate attachments to complete the assigned challenge. Then we programmed the robots to perform as required. It was a difficult 33 hours, but we got through thanks to some pretty incredible teamwork. At the end of the competition, having overcome countless technical and mechanical setbacks, the Ohio team won first place in the remote controlled competition, and a close second in the autonomous challenge with a very elegant solution and by demonstrating character above reproach.

The National Engineering Challenge was a great experience. I am honored to have been selected to participate as a delegate on the Ohio Robotics Team this year with Matthew Barrett of Warren County, Kira Miller of Wood County, and Tyler Nason of Sandusky County.

4-H Citizenship Washington Focus Trip

submitted July 7, 2015
by Eric Glaze

During the week of June 28, 2015, I attended the 4-H Citizenship Washington Focus (CWF) program in Washington D.C. I applied for this honor several months ago, and after writing an achievement record andcompleting as interview, I was selected to attend.  This was the beginning of a fantastic week-long experience in Washington D.C. for me where I saw amazing sights, learned about our government, and met new friends.

Along with 46 other Ohio delegates, I endured the grueling 9-hour bus drive to the National 4-H Center, located in Chevy Chase, Maryland, just outside of Washington D.C.  Our accommodations at the National 4-H Center were in a hotel-type setting with bunk beds and shared rooms of 3 or 4 people. All of the workshops and committee meetings were conducted in the JC Penny building onsite.  At the first night orientation we learned what to expect during the upcoming week.  Later that night, we met delegates from all ten states attending CWF that week during the “pin trading” session.  I was excited about the upcoming week’s activities.

Almost every day included some sightseeing: monuments, government buildings and memorials.  My favorite was George Washington’s home, Mt. Vernon. The weather was perfect for exploring the historic grounds. The back porch view of the Potomac River was breathtaking!  Another of my favorites was the National Cathedral.  The gothic-style building is so large that the Washington Monument could be laid end-to-end inside it.  It is the sixth largest cathedral in the world.  Other than these, we also saw the Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, Jefferson Memorial, and so many more!

In addition to sightseeing, we learned about leadership and government through participation in workshops and committees that met at the National 4-H Center.  As part of the Communications Committee, I recorded some of our activities during the week with photos and a blog post. Others in this committee advertised for CWF week events, such as the end of the week Talent Show.  We were also assigned to Color Groups where we discussed various issues currently under review in the US Congress.  Over the course of the week we wrote a bill reflecting our views on the issue. This bill was then discussed and amended by another group.  At the end of the week, we all voted on the final forms of each of the bills during a final Congressional Session held by the Government Committee.

Pin trading, field day, late night pizza, napping outside the Botanical Gardens, and lots of bus rides were all times where I made new friends.  One especially fun evening was the night the Ohio Delegation attended Toby’s Dinner Theater.  The food was delicious and the theater-in-the-round play, “1776” was entertaining.  We all especially enjoyed the time to get to know each other better.  The final event was a fun-filled evening of line-dancing and the Limbo competition with all of my new friends!

The week of the 4-H Citizenship Washington Focus trip was filled with exciting activities and great new friends. I will never forget my experiences there and I am grateful I had the opportunity to attend.

2014 National 4-H Film Fest

submitted August 8, 2014
by Eric Glaze, Pathfinders

As the first place winner in the Ohio 4-H Extension Centennial Video Contest, I attended the National 4-H Film Festival, in early August of this year. Held in St. Louis, the festival was comprised of many fun and educational activities, and the showing of films submitted by the participants. In addition to the great activities and videos, there were lots of great people to meet. The 4-H National Film Fest was a great event, and I’m very glad I could attend.

During my time there, we enjoyed many different field trips and guest speakers. Two of the most memorable speakers for me were the director of several feature length movies, and the stunt man. Both gave very interesting demonstrations, and offered good advice regarding their areas of expertise.

In addition to the speakers, there were several field trips. We went to a studio where they often worked on commercials and such, and learned some very neat things regarding animation and audio. We also visited the St. Louis Arch. The studio was very educational, and the arch very cultural, but my personal favorite was visiting the City Museum. The City Museum is basically a giant play place constructed in an old shoe factory using reclaimed materials.

Each day we viewed some of the videos that had been submitted by the participants. On the final day, the winners were announced and prizes awarded. The video that my teammate, Ben Sanders, and I submitted won second place in the Voices of 4-H category. It was also interesting meeting the other participants and learning about how they made their videos.

All in all, the National 4-H Film Fest was a wonderful experience, and I am very thankful that I was able to attend.

To view Eric and Ben's video:

"How 4-H Influences Our Lives"

submitted June 4, 2014
by Emily Egbert, News Reporter, Odyssey 4-H Club

When Dana Bullock, a senior at Lebanon High School, created a speech for her public speaking class she didn’t know how far she would go. Her goal was to write a speech that was 6 minutes long, about something she was passionate about and follow the Rotary Four-Way Test Questions: Is it the TRUTH? Is it FAIR to all concerned? Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FIENDSHIP? Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?

She chose 4-H because she grew up in 4-H and is very passionate about it. This speech was for the Rotary International 4-way Test Speech Competition which started in Mrs. Duning’s Public Speaking Class.  When every student gave their speech, a handful of them including Dana, were picked to recite their memorized speeches to the principal, Mr. Butler. Mr. Butler picked Dana, 2 other Lebanon High school students and 2 students from Warren County Career Center to go to the Rotary Club on Wednesday, March, 12, 2014 and present their speeches. The Rotary Club declared Dana as the winner. She won $75 and the chance to go on to the next stage of competition at Wright State University. On Sunday, March 31, 2014, Dana and 36 other students gave their speeches at two different times and to two different sets of judges then waited for the results. Unfortunately, Dana was not named in the top 5. But when asked if she would recommend this to other students she said:

"Yes, I would recommend this to others. Along with any other public speaking opportunities because they are great practice to help you later in life no matter what your career choice is.”

Below is a copy of Dana Bullock’s Speech

Intro:  *The midway, demolition derbies, tractor pulls, rides, funnels cakes, and deep fried anything. These are all words that come to most people’s mind when hearing “The County Fair.” I, however, think of noisy animal barns, show rings, muddy boots, hard work, and the friendships I have made over the last decade.

4-H has given me the best childhood anyone could ever ask for, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. The best part about 4-H is that anyone can take part in it. It covers many topics of interest, and is very diverse. Most importantly, for me, 4-H molds young people into leaders, and I have been very fortunate to experience this first hand.

I have discovered through my own experiences that 4-H follows the Rotary 4 way test: Is it the truth? Is it fair to all concerned? Does it promote good will and better friendships? Is it beneficial to all concerned?

Is it the Truth? Since 1902, 4-H has been an organization focusing on improving communities, and specifically focusing on agricultural promotion. This was traditionally accomplished through contests for livestock and crops at county fairs. Even though agriculture was the foundation of 4-H, it has branched out into numerous interests since. Overall, every action achieved through the 4-H program exemplifies their mantra: “To make the Best better”

Is it Fair to all concerned?  Clearly, 4-H has projects for youth of all ages. It’s not required that a 4-H member lives on a chicken farm or has been around horses their entire life. In fact, there are so many learning opportunities such as welding, shooting sports, or cooking. This means there’s a level playing field for anyone to join 4-H. This is a trait that sets 4-H apart from any other club, because it allows youth to find their passion, and gives them every tool they need to succeed

Will it build good will and better friendships?  I have found this to be true through my own lifetime with 4-H. I grew up on a Black Angus cattle farm, and ever since I could walk I have been spending my days with my father in the barns. Soon I was begging to start 4-H and take other animals to the fair. Just like most other nine year olds, my first experience in the livestock show ring was quite entertaining for any spectators that happened to watch. I took a goat project, and as soon as I entered the show ring, he jumped away and drug me across the ring. I left the show that day without an award, and covered in mulch with tears streaming down my face. I didn’t know it at the time, but the errors I made that day would be more valuable than any trophy or blue ribbon I would ever receive. Nothing in life is ever going to be handed to us on a silver platter. If we truly want something, we must commit with passion and hard work.

Some of these memories are the trips I have taken through 4-H. I was selected to attend a leadership program in Washington DC. My experience, specifically in DC, is one I will never forget. I not only met over a hundred 4-Hers from across the nation (many I still stay in touch with), but as a group we focused on discussing real world issues, and how they are handled legislatively in Congress. It takes this kind of experience to truly discover leadership. This past summer I was honored to be crowned the County Fair Queen. This title does not just entail a silly tiara and is definitely not a beauty pageant. It is however the highest leadership position in 4-H. The Fair Queen is the face of 4-H, and sets an example for the younger generation, both those in and out of the program. This opportunity has developed me into the leader I am today.

Is it Beneficial to All Concerned?  Absolutely! The participation alone shows improvement through learning, while appreciating morals and values along the way. The public benefits as well, through seeing the efforts put into action at the County Fair, through watching livestock shows, or seeing a beautiful quit or dress that has just been sewn. Many public figures enjoy coming to the fair and learning exactly what 4-H is all about. The community improves due to the charitable actions of 4-H. Lastly, parents and advisors that volunteer their precious time to teach in 4-H are benefiting from witnessing tomorrow’s leaders accomplish their goals. 4-H would not be possible without its numerous volunteers.

In conclusion, this program is one of a kind and I only hope that it continues to grow, and change the lives of more and more people. 4-H certainly demonstrates the Rotary 4 way test. I know that it has certainly changed my life for good, and has taught me more about the kind of adult I aspire to become.

Thank you.

2013 National 4-H Engineering Challenge

submitted October 16, 2013
by Eric Glaze, Pathfinders

Eric is a 6-year 4-H member, currently in the Pathfinders Club of Warren County and has led his club as secretary, vice president and president in addition to other offices over the years.  He has taken a variety of general projects over the years including Small Engines, Beekeeping, Computers, Welding, and Rocketry.  This year he also organized and led the 4-H National Science Day Maps & Apps activity with his club in addition to organizing and leading a tour of the Warren County GIS office.

This year I attended the 4-H National Engineering Challenge in the Small Engines category. Held in West Lafayette, Indiana, the Challenge was a competition between contestants from different states to determine the best entry in each of the engineering projects.  The projects included: small engines, aerospace, bicycles, software development, and tractors, to name a few.

Everyone arrived at the Lafayette Tippecanoe County Fairgrounds on Sunday afternoon.  After orientation, the participants in the robotics, software design, welding and aerospace projects split off to do their own program.  The remaining participants formed groups to work on building a mousetrap-powered car.  The rules were minimal, with the only restriction being that the car had to be able to sit on the ground, and had to be started by a mousetrap.  I was in a group with two other Ohioans, Logan Bamfield from the Tractors project and Steven Demmer from the Bicycles project.  After a few hours, Melissa Finsel, the Ohio welding participant, joined us.

The remainder of the day was spent with everyone building the cars.  During supper, the small engines participants went to a presentation about building racing engines.  Afterwards, we put the finishing touches on our cars before starting the competition to see which car would go the farthest.  Our team won!  It would have gone even farther, if it hadn’t run into the wall.

The next morning the competitions were held.  Each participant gave their presentation before a judge.  While the judges deliberated everyone, parents included, went to tour Purdue University.  Parents toured the two different laboratories and heard a presentation from the Admissions Office.  The students took a tour of the campus, and then split into smaller groups.  My group visited the Mechanical Engineering building, and hung out with a professor there where we dismantled an RC engine and reassembled it.  After that we all returned back to the fairgrounds for the Engineering Bowl and Robotics Competition.

The next day we toured the Rea Magnetic Wire factory and the Dixie Chopper factory, both very interesting tours.  That night was the awards banquet, where I led the Pledge of Allegiance.  I was happy to receive second place in Small Engines.  Overall going to the 4-H National Engineering Challenge was a great experience.  I hope I have the opportunity to return some day.

National 4-H Engineering Challenge

submitted October 22, 2012
by Nicholas Edinger, Ridgeville Sunny Shamrocks

I am a member of the Ridgeville Sunny Shamrocks. This year I competed in the 2012 National 4-H Engineering Challenge. I qualified for this trip by taking my welding project to the Fair, being selected Champion for Engineering.  This gave me the chance to compete at the Ohio State Fair where I earned the Clock Trophy and qualified for Nationals.

This year’s 2012 Nationals 4-H Engineering Challenge took place in Lafayette, Indiana at the Lafayette County Fairgrounds. Eight states were represented.  Fourteen Ohio 4-H Team members participated. I represented Ohio in welding.

I prepared for this competition by practicing welding for a month and a half with my dad. The welding competition consisted of a written exam, oral presentation, and welding a weldment. I placed first in welding and learned a lot about the job opportunities available to welders.

I got to meet and compete with 4-H'ers from other states and had a lot of fun.  I’m glad I won and proud to have represented Ohio and Warren County well. 

The National 4-H Engineering Challenge emphasize engineering, science and technology help youth explore exciting careers that are in great demand and with income levels well above average.

2012-13 Ohio Lamb and Wool Queen

submitted October 8, 2012
by Mikayla Pitman, 4-H Clover Crusaders

I am beginning my 12th year as a member of the 4-H Clover Crusaders Club. This past summer, I was honored to be crowned the 2012-13 Ohio Lamb and Wool Queen. I have been dreaming of becoming the Ohio Lamb and Wool Queen since I was a young girl and I couldn't be more thrilled to have my dream come true.

The contest included an application process, interviews with two Ohio State University professors, and I had to answer an on-stage question. I learned that if you are passionate about something don't ever give up!

I would like to thank my great 4-H advisors Donna Arnold and Jill Honerlaw as well as my mom and grandparents. I could not have accomplished my goal without them and their amazing support.

Mikayla has been involved with lambs since a very young age. She has always been passionate about sheep and the sheep Industry. She has participated in numerous market lamb shows throughout her years of 4-H. Mikayla has been involved in sheep lead contests at the Warren County Fair, the Ohio State Fair, and the North American Livestock Exposition. Mikayla enjoys raising sheep with her grandpa on her grandparents' farm.