September 2020 4-H Newsletter

4-H Happenings

A monthly newsletter for Hancock County 4-H Members

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Table of Contents

Upcoming Dates| County News | State News | Leaders Meeting Minutes |

Upcoming Dates to Remember

August 16 – September 16 – Help ME Conquer the Maine Coastline
September 16 – Deadline for 2020 Maine 4-H Dog Photo Contest – See State News
October 3-31 – Ellsworth Big Read
October 7-18 – Fall Paper Clover at Tractor Supply Company
October 13 – 4:30 pm – Leaders’ Meeting via Zoom – Contact us for the private link
November 25 – Re-enrollment Deadline – More details coming soon

County News

Summer Learning Series

August marked the conclusion of the Summer Learning Series.  Community Education Assistant, Zabet NeuCollins,  was excited to lead the workshop ‘Celebrating Summer Plants!’ with Landere Naisbitt, a 4-H volunteer and the Outreach Coordinator for Blue Hill Heritage Trust.  Participants came from all over the state, and we were proud to see some Hancock County youth in attendance!  Participants learned about the White Pine tree, how to make pine needle tea, and how to make a pine needle fairy broomstick that could also serve as a paintbrush!

We all sang a resounding rendition of the Pine Tree Song, reprinted on page 4 for your convenience. Don’t hesitate to reach out to Landere to hear her sing its melodic tune!

(See Pine Tree Song and Pine Needle Tea Recipe at end of County News)

Extension Office Protocol – The Hancock County Extension office is now open to the public by appointment! We encourage telephone and email communication if possible to reduce Covid-19 exposure risk.  If an in-person consultation is necessary, please contact us to make an appointment. Following the University of Maine guidance and protocols, staff and clients will practice physical distancing, wear face coverings, use hand sanitizer frequently, and minimize the number of people in the office by meeting outside if possible. Please see page 6 for a letter from Dean Hannah Carter about restarting in-person 4-H programs.

Leaders’ Meeting The next Leaders’ Association meeting will be by Zoom on October 13,  at 4:30 pm. Email for the private link.

Help ME Conquer the Maine Coastline – University of Maine Cooperative Extension 4-H is hosting a virtual fun run along the Maine coastline Aug. 15–Sept. 15. The event is open to the public.  Help ME Conquer the Maine Coastline is a virtual run, walk, and bike along all 3,478 miles of Maine’s coastline. The event includes an interactive map to follow as the miles add up, and videos about points along the way.

The event is free; registration is required. Register on the program webpage. Participants can register at any time prior to logging total miles beginning Aug. 15. For more information or to request a reasonable accommodation, contact Cathy Gray,

Re-enrollment 2020-2021 – Another 4-H year begins on October 1!  Re-enrollment packets will be ready soon. All paperwork must be returned to the Extension Office by Wednesday, November 25th in order to be processed before the state deadline on December 31. Absolutely no exceptions will be allowed after that date.

Steer Ticket Fundraiser – This annual fundraiser is the largest for the Hancock County 4-H Leaders Association and we are bummed to let you know that we will not be holding the Steer Ticket Raffle this year. Special thanks to Trenidy, Independent 4-H’er, and the Doug Gross Family Farm in Bucksport for raising the Simmental Angus Cross for this year’s raffle and for their flexibility in allowing us to “pay it forward” for next year!

4-H Partnering with the Ellsworth Public Library – The NEA Big Read is a series of community events focused around one book. This year, we’re reading the memoir Lab Girl by Hope Jahren.  Hope is a geobiologist who believes that anyone can be a scientist– all you need is curiosity and to be willing to experiment. In this spirit, we’re encouraging people to get outside and explore their backyards by taking up gardening, participating in citizen science initiatives, or planting a tree.  We’re planning workshops, presentations, a keynote speech from Amy Stewart and more!  Check out the  NEA Big Read: Ellsworth Facebook page for more information! The Big Read will kick off on October 3 and go through the end of the month, ending on October 31.  All of our programming will be held virtually on Zoom; however, there will be a few 4-H kits that youth can check out from the library in October. Registration information for these programs is coming soon.  We’ll be adding more programming soon, so stay tuned!

Edward – Woodworking – Chicken Tractor

Maine 4-H State Exhibit Hall – There were 86 participants in the University of Maine 4-H state virtual fair.  Hancock County was well represented with nine 4-H youth participants! Thank you Alan, Edward, Brianna, Alexis, Robert, Ava, Maddox, Annabelle, and Kowen for submitting your work. Check out the Maine 4-H Virtual Exhibit Hall  for all the entries.

Paper Clover Campaign at Tractor Supply  The Fall paper clover campaign will be held October 7-18, with the opportunity to donate to 4-H in-store and online. This year, due to the COVID-19 crisis, Tractor Supply is requesting no physical presence from 4-H programs at their stores including outdoor spaces like parking lots. We will have to be creative in how we encourage people to donate!

CloverfestThe 4-H Leaders Association and 4-H Staff are brainstorming how to celebrate the 2020 4-H year and your accomplishments throughout this unique year! Stay tuned for more details on how Cloverfest will be different this year. Thank you always for your patience and flexibility!

Masks for Hancock County program – is working on a large order for the Ellsworth School system. They are looking for any mask makers (kids or adults) who might be willing to help them out this month.  They have funding and can provide supplies. They are hoping to find both people who can sew masks and people who can cut the fabric.  They’re putting together kits to make twenty-five masks with everything precut, thinking that this will make it much easier for the people sewing. If you can help, please contact  Abby Morrow, Community Engagement Librarian, at the Ellsworth Public Library, 20 State Street, Ellsworth, (207) 667-6363 or email to They have material and elastic cut and ready to go if people would like to pick up a packet at the library

4-H Pig Project: Piglets available – Berkshire piglets are available in Sedgwick for 4-H’ers wanting to start a pig project. Contact for more info!

Summer Learning Series (continued) –

Pine Needle Tea Recipe


  • Identify a white pine tree and gather some of its needles. Thank the tree!
  • Boil water in a pot either on your stove or over a campfire*
  • Place needles in boiling water and let simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Strain needles out and pour tea into mugs
  • Add honey to taste
  • Enjoy the piny flavor and the burst of vitamin C!

*Only use fire under supervision of adult

Pine Tree Song

Oh Pine Tree standing tall,

From the hills I hear your call –

Arising! Clear and strong!

In my heart I hear your song


From the Dean about re-opening –



State News

  1. Maine and Northeast Regional 4-H Dog Photo Contests
    Enter the Maine 4-H Dog Photo Contest! Photos will be uploaded and judged virtually. Winners in each of five categories will move on to the Northeast Regional 4-H Dog Photo Contest to compete against winners from several other states. ALL enrolled 4-Hers may enter, not just dog or photography project members. Go to this web page for more information.
  2. State 4-H Dairy News
    The Maine 4-H Dairy Committee would like to announce the results of the Promote Your Passion video contest. This contest gave youth the opportunity to create a short, informational video about the dairy industry and share their passion for dairy cattle with others. We would like to congratulate Lydia S. for winning the Sr. division with her video The Milking System. Congratulations also go out to Amelia R. who won first place in the intermediate division with her video The Pasteurization Process. A close second place in the intermediate division was awarded to Isabelle G. for her video
  3. Paris Farmers Union is holding a round-up of your change at all of their stores starting September 10 – October 11. . This promotion takes the place of the Fryeburg Fair Challenge this year that we were not able to hold. The funds are critical for the animal science teams statewide. 100% of donations support our 4-H livestock and agricultural clubs and programs.  Please consider supporting your favorite animal science area today at your local Paris Farmers Union or online.

Leaders Meeting Minutes

The Hancock County 4-H Leaders’ Association Meeting for August 2020 was canceled.