Seeking new 4-H members

Agnes Hapka

October 5, 2013

MASON COUNTY — It’s a new year for 4-H, and Lorrie Wright is looking for young people interested in joining the club.

Wright, who is the West Virginia University extension agent, said that local groups are celebrating the new year by recognizing National 4-H Week, October 6-12.

Wirght said that this Sunday, October 6, the local 4-H organization will hold its kick-off event at the Mason County Fairgrounds beginning at 2 p.m. Registration will be at 1:45 p.m. on the stage in the commercial building. The event is open to all current and new 4-Hers.

“We have 4-H week to try to promote it to kids who might not be familiar with the program,” said Wright, adding that 4-H has a rich history of enriching the lives of rural people.

“From the very beginning, 4-H has been committed to making a difference in people’s lives,” Wright said.

Wright explained that in the late 1800s, researchers realized that adults in farming communities didn’t want to try new agricultural practices that had been developed on university campuses. But young people were open to experimenting with new ideas, and would share their experiences with adults.

“And that’s how 4-H was born.”

Over the past century, Wright said, the program has flourished by keeping pace with the needs of young people, their families and their communities. Today, 4-Hers tackle the nation’s top issues — from global food security, climate change and sustainable energy to childhood obesity and food safety.

Through West Virginia University’s statewide 4-H program, thousands of young people are making lifelong friends, learning by doing, changing their communities and having fun in the process.

Mason County has 23 4-H clubs in all areas of the county.

The overall goals of 4-H are to develop life and leadership skills, build self-esteem and character, foster citizenship and service and teach healthy habits. Membership is free, and open to youths ages 9-21. Mason County also has various Cloverbud Clubs open to youths ages 5-8.

A new 4-H program year is about to start.

“Are you up to the challenges you’ll find in 4-H? If so, join the club,” Wright said.

Learn more about local 4-H opportunities by contacting Lorrie Wright, WVU Extension agent, in WVU Extension’s Mason County office at or by calling (304) 675-0888.