Fairfax County’s new 4-H Extension Agent, Krystal Williams, hosted a community dialog with youth and adults to make plans for the 69th annual 4-H Fair in Fairfax County. For years, the fair has been a critical part of the 4-H program to showcase their outstanding achievements of youth participants. It is a time where clubs interact with the public, and other counties to educate the public about various 4-H programs. The main focus of the dialog was to work out ideas and solutions for the event to better reach out to the community and increase participation.
“We had a lot of great ideas,” Williams noted. “One idea was to consolidate all the smaller booths we have been using in the past and try and make one large information booth that explains what 4-H is, and all about their various clubs. Another great idea was a more hands-on horse demonstration instead of their usual horse show. This gives the public the opportunity to understand and learn more about the process of making a horse show, and thus increase interest in the subject overall.”
They are still holding their usual intercounty club competitions and the Fair King and Queen competition. But the inclusion of the hands on horse demonstration, along with their usual petting zoos and farm animals, helps to demonstrate what it means to be a 4-H member.
4-H is a youth-based organization headed by the Virginia Cooperative Extension Office. The program offers a number of experiences that can appeal to individuals of all ages and interests – from technology/robotics and shooting sports to animal care and environmental stewardship. The biggest example of their showcasing is the competition they have between other 4-H counties, which in turn give youth the chance to meet new people and make new friends.
“Our hope is to provide an educational experience for all the 4-H members,” Williams said. “I want people to get excited for the fair, and to leave with a positive experience and even an interest in pursuing their own experience with a 4-H club.”
If you or your child are interested in attending the fair contact Krystal at firstname.lastname@example.org or see the event on this website which includes the opening and closing times of the fair for each day. The grand opening event will be Saturday, August 5 at 10:00am.