Thursday, July 30, 2015

All Star Picnic August 9

The 8th Annual Northern District 4-H All Star Chapter picnic will be at Graves Mountain Lodge on Sunday afternoon, August 9.  The 2015 All Stars will be recognized.  Parents, spouses, and other family members are welcome.  Go to for directions and more information on the Lodge, which is owned and operated by 4-H All Stars Jimmy and Rachel Graves.  Graves Mountain Lodge is in Madison County at Syria.
Registration is from 3:30-4:15 at the picnic shelter.  Pass the main entrance and take the next road on the left directly into the shelter area.  If you would like to come early, you have the option of visiting the farm animals across the road, swimming (for a fee), or horseback riding (for a fee).  Call ahead for info- 540-923-4231.
There will be a silent auction to build the chapter treasury as well as to add interest and fun to the gathering.  Attendees are asked to participate by bringing a basket of fresh garden produce, plants, loaves of various breads, cakes, as well as "things."
The district meeting and recognition of 2015 All Stars will be at 4:25.  Dinner will be at 5:15 and the event will adjourn at 6:15.
The cost of the picnic meal is $11 per person.
If you would like to attend, please register by August 1.  For registration information or if you have questions, please contact William Thomas (540-825-1873, wetsbt[at] or Judy Ann Fray (540-948-4220, ja.fray[at]

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Seeking Applications for the 2015-2016 Teen Excellence in Leadership Institute

The 2015-2016 Teen Excellence in Leadership Institute (T.E.L.I.) committee is seeking nominations for outstanding teens (rising 10th and 11th graders) that are interested in leadership and issues facing today’s youth.  T.E.L.I. is a collaborative program between Virginia 4-H and Virginia FFA and has the following goals for participants:
·        Understand self and develop a personalized action plan for engaged leadership;
·        Network with other teens interested in learning about issues facing youth and communities;
·        Design a team project to address community-leadership needs in Virginia;
·        Learn more about advocacy and outreach that will improve the lives of others.

This opportunity will be offered to up to 25 qualified teens and typed applications and nominations must be submitted no later than September 1, 2015.  The cost for participation is $199 per teen for all four events and active participation/attendance is expected during each session.  Additional scholarships may be available from local 4-H programs or FFA chapters.  More information can be found in the attached T.E.L.I. flyer and also attached is the application and nomination form.

Important Dates:
Nominations and Applications Due:                                       September 1, 2015
Applicant Notification Date:                                                      September 15, 2015
Session 1 @ W.E. Skelton 4-H Center (Wirtz, VA)                  November 6-*, 2015
Virtual Session 1:                                                                          January 12, 2016
Virtual Session 2:                                                                          February 18, 2016
Session 2 @ Airfield 4-H Center (Wakefield, VA)                   April 8 – 10, 2016

If you are interested in applying for this opportunity, please contact Sarah or Kaci for more information and the application packet.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Congratulations to Ryan Cole for a winning idea in the National 4-H Mall!

Congratulations to Ryan Cole, Archery Club member, for having his idea chosen as a winner in a contest to have products developed and put into the National 4-H Mall!  He submitted an idea to the National 4-H Council as part of his participation on the "Trend Spotter" team.  This team was created to help the National 4-H Council develop new ideas and products to have in the 4-H Mall (the National 4-H store).  The winning idea that he came up with was a Cloverbud Coloring Book- an AWESOME idea!  He will be working with the team at the National 4-H Council to develop this idea.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Employment Opportunity at NOVA 4-H Center Challenge Course

**The NOVA 4-H Center is looking to hire mature and responsible older teens/adults from mid-August through mid-November (about 35 hours per week) to help with fall groups primarily on our challenge course. All training will be provided and housing on-site for that time frame can be offered as well.

This is an excellent leadership and learning opportunity for those between jobs or those out of high school but not yet ready or interested in college. **

John E. Dooley Challenge Course Facilitator Employment Opportunities

About the Northern Virginia 4-H Educational and Conference Center: Located on 229 acres in
the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, our non-profit organization is dedicated to the youth  and adults in the 19 Northern VA communities we serve. We host 9 weeks of summer camp, several teen and adult training opportunities each year, numerous school and scouting groups, are home to Special Love, an organization that enriches the lives of families with cancer, and serve as a conference center for retreats, trainings, church groups, and other professional organization functions.

John E. Dooley Challenge Course Facilitators: We are looking for responsible, caring, and committed young adults interested in furthering the 4-H mission through safe and thoughtful challenge course programming. Individuals who are energetic and enjoy working in a collaborative partnership with each other and the challenge course manager are welcome to apply. Time will be spent in training as well as training others, facilitating, general course maintenance, record keeping, and working with youth and adults. Prior challenge course experience is helpful but not required.

 Training
     o Must demonstrate excellent facilitation skills and safe practices
 Development
     o Improve upon current games and initiatives, processing techniques and tools, in-school program curriculum
 Delivery
     o Responsibly facilitate challenge course programming to youth and adult audiences
 Maintenance
     o Maintain programming equipment to include land initiative items, low and high ropes elements, re-stock first aid kits, maintain ropes course logs, monitor course safety

 Energetic, enthusiastic, sense of humor, accountable, and positive
 Must be able to work independently and collaboratively
 Excellent customer-service, organizational, and communication skills
 At least 18 years of age
 Current CPR and First Aid Certification
 Must be able to work active days outside in the elements
 Must submit to a criminal background/sex offender check

Benefits Include:
 Fast paced, stimulating work environment
 Training and Professional Development opportunities
 Direct, hands-on, relevant experience
 Lodging/some meals provided

Applications will not be processed until all materials have been received. Please send letter of interest, resume, 3 references, copy of any certifications, and application to:

Northern VA 4-H Educational and Conference Center
Attn: Avery Born
600 4-H Center Drive
Front Royal, VA 22630

Monday, July 20, 2015

Coleman Lumber Donates Sawdust for Animal Bedding at the Fair

We are grateful to Coleman Lumber for donating the sawdust needed for animal bedding at the Orange County Fair this week. The trailer should be there Tuesday or Wednesday, so please use this information to help you plan your week at the fair.

Friday, July 17, 2015

A Message Regarding Sponsored Meals at the Fair Next Week

Central Virginia Insurance is extremely pleased to be able to help feed our 4-H kids and families on Friday, July 24th for breakfast and lunch.  The Fair Board has requested we not cover the dinner time meal so we hope you will take advantage of a large and extended lunch before kids begin showing at 4pm!  There will be breakfast served between 7am to 11 am and lunch soon after until show time.  We would welcome any veggie donations from our 4-H family gardens to add to our menu including potatoes, green beans, squash, zucchini, onions, peppers and tomatoes.  Any and all of these things will complement our meal plans perfectly!  The Orange farm community has become such a wonderful addition to our agency and we look forward to being able to give a small something back to each and every one of you!  We thank you for your business!!
Jennifer Oliver & Billy Frederick

Greene 4-H Invites Local Youth to Participate in Two Day Camps

Greene County 4-H is hosting two days camps in August to which Orange youth are invited.

First is Cloverbud STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math) Day Camp for youth ages 5-8. Projects include Junk Drawer Robotics, Kitchen Chemistry, nature, and more. The date is Monday, August 10, and the cost is $20.

Second is "Passport to Fun", a cultural journey exploring the crafts, cooking, music and dancing of 15 Asian and Latino countries. The event is for youth ages 9-18 and costs $16. The date is Tuesday, August 11.

Both day camps will be held at Camp Albemarle from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Participants are responsible for their own transportation and bag lunch. Please register by August 7 with the Greene County Extension Office: 434-985-5236.

All Poultry Coming to the Orange County Fair will Need to Be Pullorum Tested

By law, all poultry being exhibited at the Orange County Fair (this includes 4-H Chicken Parade entries and Crazy Pets exhibits) must be pullorum tested before the fair. The club leaders have arranged for a certified tester to be at the fairgrounds Tuesday, July 21, at 6:00 p.m. It only takes a few minutes.

If you cannot attend at that time, please make arrangements with someone else to bring your bird. Thank you!

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

CALS Alumni Golf Tournament in Zion Crossroads

The Virginia Tech College of Ag and Life Sciences Alumni Organization Golf Tournament "Scramble for Scholars" will be held in Zion Crossroads on August 10th at the Spring Creek Golf Course.  The Alumni Organization is looking for teams to participate in this event!  This event has been held in Blacksburg the past few years, but they have decided to rotate this event throughout the state.  Help the organization endow the CALS Alumni Organization Excellence Fund, in memory of Dr. Glenn A. Anderson, to support experiential learning opportuntities outside of the classroom.
There are prizes for a putting contest, longest drive, closest to the pin, first, and second places.
The registration fee is $175 for alumni and friends (you do not have to be an alumni of Virginia Tech to play!) and the fee includes cart, green fees, mulligans, lunch, drinks, and awards reception.

Please register by Monday, August 3 by visiting

Fair Clean-up Days Announced

The Orange County Fair Board requests volunteers to help with fair set-up and preparation on Sunday, July 19, starting at 12:00 Noon or whenever you can assist. There will not be any set-up activities on Saturday due to the horse show.

Please dress to work and bring gloves. Adults who can bring weedeaters to operate, please do so. T-post drivers will also be helpful. Youth can assist with stick pick-up, snow fence, spreading mulch, etc. If you have a pitchfork and/or rake and can bring that, it will be useful.

The fair board will be leading this work session, so please look to them for guidance as to how we can best help them get ready for the fair.

4-H pen set-up will likely be Monday evening, starting with the hog pens and then progressing through the other tents. Unless your department head has told you otherwise, please plan to help Monday evening, 7/20.

The fair is one of our biggest events throughout the year, so thank you in advance for contributing your time and tools to help make lighter work for all!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

4-H Plans Series to Highlight Graduating Seniors...First Up: Jessica Pedersen

We are pleased to recognize our graduating seniors this year with an individualized blog post about each. Many thanks to Summer Intern Aldyn Abell for interviewing these young adults and readying their stories for print. 

Today we highlight Jessica Pedersen. 

Photo taken by Seizetheday Photography, LLC
“I used to be really shy, but 4-H brought me out of my shell and has helped me develop public speaking skills, self-confidence, and a love for service,” says Jessica Pedersen, who is a graduating senior of the Orange County 4-H Program. Jessica lives here in Orange and graduated from Orange County High School on June 13th. This fall, she will begin her freshman year at Regent University as a Communications Major. With a goal of pursuing a career in agricultural sustainability, Jessica plans to focus her studies in Public Relations to equip herself with the necessary communication skills needed to become an advocate for agricultural practices to the non-farming community.
Jessica has been involved in Orange County 4-H for the past eight years. Her involvement ranges from participating in the 4-H Livestock Club and Stockman's Team to various community service projects and competing at the Orange County Fair with her market lambs and hogs, art, and yummy baked goods! She has served in a variety of leadership roles including two years as Secretary of the livestock club, and now currently as Vice President. Jessica’s dedication to service is also recognizable through her involvement in service learning projects, including helping with the food pantry and planting flowers at a local nursing home. She credits 4-H with helping her develop self-confidence that has allowed her to become more outgoing, assertive, and involved in the community.
Participating in 4-H over the past eight years, she has created many memories. She recalls some of her fondest memories being at the Orange County Fair. “It’s what you work towards all year, you get to hang out with all your 4-H friends at the fair and have fun. Then at the end of the week you get to put on your sparkly belt, boots, go in the show ring, and show off all your hard work.” For her last year showing at the fair, Jessica will be competing with her two market lambs and market hog.

Good luck this fall at Regent University, Jessica!

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

State Fair Youth Livestock Entries

The 2015 State Fair of Virginia Youth Livestock Shows will be held October 2 – 4, 2015 at the Meadow Event Park in Doswell, VA. Exhibitor information, rules, and entry forms can be found at on the youth livestock web site.

Entries for the 2015 State Fair are now being accepted. The state 4-h office is working with the State Fair and utilizing ShowWorks to capture entries this year. You will be able to go back into the system to make any changes to your entry up until entry deadline.

All entries must be completed online. Entry receipts must be printed and signed by your Extension Agent or FFA Advisor, and returned to Joi Saville.

There is a $5 per head entry fee for all non-nominated animalsThis includes all registered animals (beef, sheep, and goats), feeder steers, and non-nominated commercial heifers. Your entry will be considered incomplete until they receive the entry receipt and payment.

Entries are due August 15, 2015. All entry receipts need to be postmarked by August 20, 2015. CHECKS NEED TO BE MADE PAYABLE TO: Virginia 4-H Foundation.

Exhibitor information, rules and entry information can be found at the following link:

If you have any issues with the entry system, please contact Stuart Sanders at

Chesapeake Bay Experience Summer Workshop- Space Still Available!

Have you ever visited the Chesapeake Bay?  One of the largest watersheds in the world comes together right in our backyard, and many of us don't take advantage of all of the learning opportunities that it presents!  Come join us on July 29-31 as we take a trip and explore the Chesapeake Bay.  We will leave on that Wednesday morning and travel to the Eastern Shore of Virginia where we do things like have a meaningful watershed experience learning all about the Chesapeake Bay watershed, visit NASA's Wallops Island station, possibly see the wild ponies at Chincoteague, visit the VCE Research station where they have over 31 ongoing research projects on over 225 acres, and more!  Be prepared to spend a lot of time outdoors and in the water!  We will also have free time scheduled to go swimming and do other fun outdoor activities.  We are looking at also getting together with other 4-Hers and their clubs that are on the Eastern Shore.  
The cost for this trip is $220 and covers all transportation, meals, lodging, field trips, and more!  The trip is open to rising 7-10th graders, and there is a limit of 6 students from Orange and 6 students from Madison.
The brochure can be found on the document library in the "Summer Workshops" folder or you can find it by going directly here
All participants who sign up for camps must fill out a health history form and code of conduct. 
You have two ways of paying for camp this year!  You can either submit a check with your registration, or you may pay online!  To pay online, please visit and print the receipt and submit it with your registration.
Registration for for this camp is due no later than July 20.
If you have any questions, please contact the Extension Office!

Farm to Table Summer Workshop- Space Still Available!

Have you heard about the local foods and Farm to Table movement?  If not (or even if you have) come explore the movement and concept more in depth with us on August 18-20 from 9 am-3 pm each day.  We will go on field trips to local farms, pick our own food, learn about growing our own food, can and preserve what we have picked, make meals with our locally grown food, and more!  We will learn all about what is grown right here in Orange County and in the surrounding areas.
This camp is open for rising 6th-9th graders, and the cost to participate is $45.
To register for all summer workshops, please visit the document library and check out the "Summer Workshops" folder.  Registration for workshops will close two weeks prior to the individual workshop (so for this workshop, registration will close August 4.)
Please contact the Extension office for more information!

Livestock Club Meeting Moved to Research Station Tonight

Due to the weather forecast, tonight's 4-H Livestock Club meeting will be moved to the Northern Piedmont Center on Rt. 15 next to Orange-Madison Coop. The meeting starts at 7:00 p.m.

Remember to bring your up to date record book please!

Monday, July 6, 2015

Small Ruminant Field Day

Save the Date!  Small Ruminant Field Day September 18, 2015 at Virginia State University's Randolph Farm, 4415 River Road, Petersburg, VA!

Registration is now open for VSU’s Small Ruminant Field Day!   To register for this FREE event, visit event is open to everyone who is currently involved with goat or sheep meat or milk production or those interested in learning more about raising small ruminants.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Comment Regarding Fair Theme Decorations

We've had a couple of families inquiring about how to decorate for the fair theme of Farm to Fair to Home. You're welcome to employ your creativity and do whatever you want, but if you're stuck, here's our idea.

This is a GREAT opportunity to educate the public about about what happens in 4-H and with animal care in all three places mentioned. Start with your farm. Show photos, add descriptions, tell people the history of your family and your farm. If you borrow animals, mention that and give credit to the farm owners who help you out. If you bought your animals from another breeder, showcase that person's farm.

For the fair portion, display the steps of what you had to do to get ready for the fair. Think of all the hours of walking, washing, training, planning; most fairgoers don't realize what you do. If you attend other fairs or shows, include those, too.

For the home part, what will you do after the fair? Tell the story of breeding animals that are returned to the farm and how you will make decisions regarding their progeny. For market animals, promote the high quality meat that you have produced and what makes it premium compared to other products. 4-H livestock shows are local foods at their best!

There are a number of ways to convey these messages, but pictures are always good. You should use large photos whenever possible, because fairgoers will be eight or more feet away from most displays and we want them to be able to see. Another approach to your display could be to use a tri-fold or three-panel display. First, the farm, then the fair, and then home.

Again, these are just suggestions, so feel free to use your creativity and tell your story however works best for you! Good luck!