Monday, November 30, 2015

Statewide Teen Weekend February 5-7 at Smith Mountain Lake

Statewide Teen Weekend, will be held February 5-7, 2016 at the W.E. Skelton 4-H Educational Center in Wirtz, VA (Smith Mountain Lake).  The State 4-H Cabinet has worked hard on planning this event and it promises to be the highlight of the season. This event provides an opportunity for teens across the Commonwealth to come together for a weekend filled with educational programs and leadership. This year’s workshops include: Shooting Sports, Cooking on Budget, DNA Extraction, Team Building, and Table Etiquette.  Participants will also take part in a Go Pro service project. Please note that participants must be 14 years of age by September 30, 2016.

The cost for the weekend is $105.00 and checks must be made payable to the Virginia 4-H Foundation. Please complete the registration form and mail along with the $105.00, Health History form, and Code of Conduct form to:

Tonya Price
Virginia 4-H
2322 Blue Stone Hills Drive, Suite 140
Harrisonburg, VA 22801

The registration form can be found on the document library in the "Blog Post Follow Up" file.

Please note that the deadline to register is January 8, 2016.

Home Ec Club makes pumpkin roll from scratch!

The Home Ec Club had a great time at their November meeting learning how to make pumpkin roll!  They used freshly prepared pumpkin and made the pumpkin roll completely from scratch.  Thanks to Melissa White for leading this activity!

Monday, November 23, 2015

2016 4-H Honey Bee Essay Contest

2016 4-H Essay Contest Announcement and Rules

Sponsored by The Foundation for the Preservation of Honey Bees, Inc.
Awards:  Cash Prices to 3 Top State Winners at these levels –
2nd- $50
 3rd- $25

State winner will be forwarded on to National competition and could win cash prizes as follows:
1st - $750
2nd- $500
3rd- $250
Each state winner, including the national winners, receives an appropriate book about honey bees, beekeeping, or honey.

For the 2016 essay contest, the topic is:

“Bees and Pollination.  How Important is it?”
 Beekeeping has had its five minutes of fame for the past five years. Now more than ever, people are asking “What will happen if the bees are gone?” Your paper should research and help answer this question.

Survey your community to see what is being done to help honeybees.  Include your state in our survey to see if there is a wildflower planting program available or any other program that could aid the honey bee.

The scope of the research is an essential judging criterion, accounting for 40% of your score. The number of sources consulted, the authority of the sources, and the variety of the sources are all evaluated.

Personal interviews with beekeepers and others familiar with the subject are valued sources of information and should be documented. Sources, which are not cited in the endnotes, should be listed in a “Resources” or “Bibliography” list.

Note that “honey bee” is properly spelled as two words, even though many otherwise authoritative references spell it as one word.

1. Contest is open to active 4-H Club members only.  4-H’ers who have previously placed first, second or third at the national level are not eligible; other state winners are eligible to re-enter.

2. Requirements (failure to meet any one requirement disqualifies the essay) –
 Preparation for National Judging:  ELECTRONIC SUBMISSIONS ONLY, double spaced, 12-pt. Times or similar type style, following standard manuscript format.  Submit as a Microsoft Word compatible document.
 Write on the designated subject only.
 All factual statements must be referenced with bibliographical-style endnotes.
 A brief biographical sketch of the essayist, including date of birth, gender, complete mailing address, and telephone number, must accompany the essay.
 Length – the essay proper: 750-1000 words.
 The word count does not include the endnotes, the bibliography or references, nor the essayist’s biographical sketch – which should be on a separate page.

3. Essays will be judged on (a) scope of research – 40%; (b) accuracy – 30%; (c) creativity – 10%; (d) conciseness – 10%; and (e) logical development of the topic – 10%.

4. Essayists should forward essays to the state judging team postmarked by February 12, 2016.  The winner of the state contest will be forwarded to the national competition before March 1.

5. The state winner will be announced on March 4, 2016 and the National Winner will be announced the week of May 2, 2016.

6. All National entries become the property of the Foundation and may be published or used as it sees fit.  No essay will be returned. The National winners’ essay will appear in an issue of the American Beekeeping Federation’s Newsletter.

7. Email state entries by the deadline (Feb. 12, 2016) to:
In the subject line:  VA. 4-H Beekeeping Essay Contest
All entries received will be promptly acknowledged; if you have not received an acknowledgment after 3 business days, please resubmit.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

NOVA 4-H Center Seeking Applicants for 2016 Junior 4-H Camp Staff

It's that time of the year again! The Northern Virginia 4-H Center is looking for thoughtful, energetic, responsible future leaders to apply for staff positions for the 2016 Junior 4-H Camp season.

What is expected of a summer program staff member at the Northern Virginia 4-H Center?

Typically, 4-H Center summer program staff have completed at least one year of college and have work and/or volunteer experience in 4-H, teaching, and/or youth programming. (Previous experience in 4-H is not required.)
Regardless of your previous work and/or volunteer experience, successful employment at the 4-H Center requires certain personal attributes, including:
• Friendliness / Open Mindedness
• Patience
• Creativity
• Enthusiasm
• Interest in teaching and learning
• Positive Attitude
• Flexibility

We believe that 4-H Center programs and services give us the opportunity to positively impact our community. For that reason, we consider a positive attitude and the ability to be friendly and caring toward youth and adults to be as important as previous education, training, or certification. (For some positions, the 4-H Center can assist applicants in identifying ways to become trained and/or certified.)

What are the benefits of being a summer program staff member at the Northern Virginia 4-H Center?
• Weekly salary (starting at $200 for 1st year staff members and additional weekend opportunities for programming and/or lifeguarding hours)
• Lodging (private room with a roommate)
• Meals (all food is provided from Sunday dinner through Thursday lunch)
• Staff Shirt
• Weekends off
• Training (approximately 15 days of staff training)
• Weekend lodging and access to the 4-H Center pool

Thank you for your interest in being a part of Team NOVA 2015! It is because of you over 2,000 youth a summer get to have an amazing week of camp. Please complete this application and required reference forms.

If you have any questions regarding 4-H Center program employment, please use the contact information below.

Shauna Manovich
Program Manager, 4-H
(540) 635-7171
600 4-H Center Drive
Front Royal Va, 22630

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Club Officer Training Wednesday, November 18

Officer Training will be held Wednesday, November 18 from 6:30-8:30 at the George James Community Center in Radiant, VA.  This is just past Tucker Livestock on Route 230 in Madison County- approximately 15 minutes from the Extension Office.  This will be a joint officer training with Madison 4-H club officers as well.  

The address is 1215 George James Loop, Radiant VA.  From the Extension Office, you will take route 15, turn left onto 230, go approximately 3.5 miles and the center will be on the right.  It is a two story brownish/tan building.  
We highly encourage all officers to attend!  This is a great way for you to learn team building skills, parliamentary procedure, how to work together as an officer team, and more. 

If you have any questions, please feel free to let us know.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Poinsettia Fundraiser Reminder!

Don't forget- the poinsettia fundraiser is going on now!  This is a great way to make money for your club that can be used all year.

Small, 6 inch pots are $7 each and jumbo, 8 inch pots are $14 each.   Half of the profit from these plants ($1.75 per plant for regulars and $3.75 for jumbos) goes back to the club that the members specify that they are selling for.

Orders are due to the Extension Office on November 19 (which is less than two weeks away!)  Then, they can be picked up from the Extension Office on December 2 from 3 pm until 6:30 pm and then throughout the day on December 3.  

These plants come from right here in Orange County- from Battlefield Farms.  These are gorgeous plants (when they say jumbo- they are huge!).  All plants are red- sorry, we cannot take orders for any other colors.    

Check out the document library in the "Poinsettia Fundraiser" folder for the 2015 order form and flier that you can use to advertise.  There are also images on the Facebook page that you can share to let people know that you are selling poinsettias.

Monday, November 2, 2015

2015 Orange County Christmas Parade

Save the date!  The 2015 Orange County Christmas Parade will be held Sunday, December 6th at 4:30 p.m. (line-up begins at 3:30).
The theme this year is "Christmas at the Beach- Celebrate the season in the southern hemisphere where December is mid-summer."
For additional details and entry form, visit or e-mail orangerotaryclub[at]

State WHEP Contest- January 23, 2016

4-H WHEP (Wildlife Habitat Education Program) is a hands-on, environmental education program that teaches young people valuable lessons about wildlife management, conservation, leadership, team-building, citizenship and communication.

To learn more about WHEP visit

Even if you aren't competing, but this sounds like something that may be of interest to you, come to the State WHEP Contest January 23, 2016 at Holiday Lake 4-H Center and see what it is all about!! 
The contest will be held on in conjunction with the 4-H Natural Resources Weekend (see previous blog post for information on that event.)

2016 WHEP Contest
Cost:  No registration fee for the contest.   Lunch Fee - $10.00 per person (Youth, parent volunteers/chaperones, etc.) Lunch which will be provided by the 4-H Center.  Paid the day of the contest 
If you are attending Natural Resources weekend your lunch is included.  No extra fee
Contest Region:  Eastern Deciduous Forest.  However, for the Wildlife Challenge portion of the contest, species found in the Urban and Wetlands regions are included.  Please refer to the NEW 2015 WHEP Manual as posted at for the most current information which will be used for this contest. 
Contestants, parents, volunteers and anyone else attending:  Please dress appropriately for the weather.  Some parts of the contest will be outside regardless of the weather.
Parts of the Contest:
1.      Wildlife Challenge (Juniors & Seniors) - The Wildlife Challenge combines wildlife identification and general knowledge. Participants visit stations where they may be presented with a wildlife specimen and questions related to the species. Participants may be asked to identify an animal by specimen or portion of specimen, photo, animal sign, or sound. Questions for the Wildlife Challenge may be from information within Concepts and Terms, Ecoregions, Wildlife Species, Wildlife Management Practices, and the Glossary.  Wildlife food items and questions pertaining to wildlife foods also may be included.  Appendix B provides definitions of various wildlife foods. Refer to species descriptions to learn what various species eat.
·         Spelling & Capitalization - When identifying species in the Wildlife Challenge, the correct spelling, capitalization and hyphenation must be used in order to receive credit.  Refer to Index of Wildlife Species pages 69-70 for proper spelling and capitalization. 

2.      Wildlife Quiz Bowl (Juniors Only) This wildlife version of jeopardy is a fun and exciting event.  Teams of 3 – 4 members will compete against each other answering questions which may come from the EASTERN DECIDUOUS FOREST Wildlife Species, EASTERN DECIDUOUS FOREST Region Information, Concepts and Terms and the Glossary. This will be a two round competition.  Round 1 will be head to head and Round 2 will be toss-up.  Individual contestants can still participate.  They will be put together to form a team or added to a 3 person team.  

3.      Wildlife Management Practices (WMP’s) & Plan Writing:
a.      Juniors - Guided session related to plan writing and wildlife management practices. (Participants will be provided reference materials –WMP pages and Species Information)
b.      Seniors – Refer to manual  for detailed explanation these parts of the contest
     i.      On-Site Recommendation of Wildlife Management Practices (WMPs)
     ii.      Written Management Plan
    iii.      Oral Defense of Written Plan

Junior Division –For youth ages 9-13 (as of January 1, 2016 –follow National WHEP rules). 
This division will include:  
1.      Wildlife Challenge – Award placings will be given. 
2.      Wildlife Quiz Bowl 
3.      WMP’s & Plan Writing - A guided session related to plan writing and wildlife management practices.

Senior Division - Full competition for youth ages 14-19 (must be 14 and not 19 as of January 1, 2016 –follows National WHEP rules).   They must have a team of 3 or 4 members to be eligible to compete in the full contest.  Individual seniors may compete, however they will only be eligible for the individual awards.

This division will include:  
1.      Wildlife Challenge
2.      On-Site Recommendation of Wildlife Management Practices (WMPs)
3.      Written Management Plan
4.      Oral Defense of Written Plan

The new 2015 manual that will be used for this contest is on the web at  Please refer to this version of the manual ONLY. 

To register for the state contest no later than Friday, January 15, 2016

If you have problems with registration please contact Kelly Mallory at the Madison Extension Office number 540-948-6881.

Counties may send as many teams and/or individuals as they like.  Individuals from different counties may be combined at the contest to make teams.

National WHEP Contest – The top placing Senior Team will qualify to represent Virginia at the National WHEP Contest.  This contest is normally held during the last week of July.  2016 contest location and date are not yet available.