December 2021 4-H Newsletter

4-H Happenings

A monthly newsletter for Hancock County 4-H Members

Download the PDF

Table of Contents

Upcoming Dates| County News | Club News | State News | Leaders Meeting Minutes | Cooking with Kids

Upcoming Dates to Remember

December 24 – Extension Office Closed  – Observation of Christmas
December 31 – State Deadline for Re-enrollment – No Exceptions
December 31 – Extension Office Closed – Observation of New Years Day
January 11 – 4:30 pm – Leaders’ Meeting via Zoom
January 17 – Extension Office Closed – Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr.
February 8 – 4:30 pm – Leaders’ Meeting via Zoom

County News

Noni S.

50 Years of Service

We’d like to thank Noni Silsby for her 50 years of leadership in Hancock County 4-H.  Hancock County Leaders’ Association president, Brenda Jordan, and Joyce Fortier surprised Noni with an at home visit to present her with her 50 year ruby pin, a 4-H bag with her name engraved on it, along with some chocolate to sweeten the deal.  Fifty years is a lot of dedication – thank you so much Noni!!

Important Office Updates for Winter

Please note that there are some major upcoming changes to our office coming this winter! Joyce Fortier will be retiring in early December after 18 years of service to 4-H and Cooperative Extension! We wish her the very best in her well-deserved retirement! Carla Scocchi will be on maternity leave until the end of February celebrating the birth of her second child. This leaves Hancock County without any local 4-H staff over the winter months – but don’t sweat! – our wonderful colleagues in the Washington County office have agreed to support our local 4-H program in our absence. Don’t hesitate to contact Sue Baez in our Hancock County Extension Office to be connected with a 4-H staff member who can support you. In the meantime, you will be receiving limited newsletter communications (state news only) from us until March 2022. Thanks for your understanding, and we wish you a wonderful winter season!

 Leaders’ Meeting The next Leaders’ Association meeting will be by Zoom on January 11, at 4:30 pm. Email for the private link.

Re-enrollment 2021-2022 Final Reminder – Another 4-H year has begun! If you have not submitted your paperwork – the state deadline is December 31. Absolutely no exceptions will be allowed after that date.

Project Record – Congratulation to our Sherry F. for her award winning project record.  Sherry was the only project record we received this year – awesome job – your blue ribbon, pin and $15 check are in the mail!

Photo Contest 2021 – We have the results of our Photo Contest 2021.  Congratulations to the

following photographers.

  • Finn M., Independent – 6 Cloverbud participant ribbons
  • Adalyn J., Jolly Juniors – 2 Cloverbud participant ribbons
  • Lilly M., Jolly Juniors – 1 Cloverbud participant ribbon
  • Ella K., Jolly Juniors – 1 First place blue ribbon, 1 Red ribbon – $10
  • Nora M., Jolly Juniors – 1 Red ribbon
  • Emma S., Independent – 2 First place blue ribbons, 1 Red ribbon – $20
  • Nayeli M., Independent – 3 First place blue ribbons, 3 Red ribbons – $30
  • Kaydence M., Jolly Juniors – 1 Top blue ribbon – $10
  • Zoe S., Rails N’ Trails – 3 Second place blue ribbons – $15

    2021 Photo Contest
    Judges’ Choice
    Alyssa S. – Rails N’ Trails
  • Kacie S., Rails N’ Trails – 1 First place blue ribbon – $10
  • Lily T., Rails N’ Trails – 1 Second place blue ribbon, 2 Red ribbons – $5
  • Alyssa S., Rails N’ Trails – 2 First place blue ribbons, 1 Red ribbon – $20 plus Judges Choice Ribbon

Special thanks to Sue Baez, 4-H Volunteer and Extension Administrative Supervisor for assisting with the judging!  Thank you also to the Hancock County Leaders’ Association for sponsoring this event.

Chipotle Sustainability Challenge – We thought you’d be interested to know about our new Youth Challenge: Chipotle Sustainability Challenge (see details and social info below).  The Challenge is a contest where youth can submit project ideas to make their food system more sustainable, then get implementation funding and possibly win 1k+ in prize money!  Young people 8-18 are eligible (can be groups, clubs or individuals/families) and action plans can be projects they are already working on, but we want youth to flex their civic skills and ask for change!
Maybe you can share with the appropriate people in 4-H?  Such a great opportunity to fund student action projects.
Happy to answer any questions, Looking forward to connecting, Alyssa McConkey (she/her/hers)

Earth Force Program Manager, Tel: (720) 580-3161 | Instagram

What is the Sustainability Challenge? – Cultivating a more sustainable tomorrow starts with today’s young minds. Chipotle with Earth Force bring you the Sustainability Challenge, where young people take action to improve their local food systems through choosing community-based projects like bringing more organic food to their schools or creating local composting initiatives to improve their neighborhood’s soil health. The top thirty submissions have the chance to win up to $1,000 – apply by March 31, 2022.  And funding for action projects too!

Need to Know: Visit to get started – the first 100 Action Plans submitted get an extra $100 in implementation money!

How you can help:  Forward our Earthforce website ( to young people who might be interested and/or adults who would be willing to share this with the young people in their networks.

Follow us on Instagram @earthforce and share our posts about the Challenge.

Here’s how it works: Young people research their community and tell us how they’re going to make their food system more sustainable.

We’ll review the young people’s budget and distribute money to complete the plan. Action Plan funds are first-come, first-serve with only completed submissions eligible. Apply by January 31 to ensure there is funding available. The first 100 complete submissions will also receive an extra $100.*
Young people submit their story of how they took action and asked for a change.
The top 30 submissions will present at the Challenge Showcase! The top 15 submissions will each win $1000 and the top 16-30 submissions will each win $500.*

Download a Student Workbook, Adult Partner Guide, and more at The Sustainability Challenge is a chance for young people to create and implement projects that improve their food systems. If your young people are already working on a project, they’re still eligible to enter!

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Open to legal residents of the 50 U.S. & DC, ages 8 to 18 years (minors must have parental consent). Enter between approx. 12:00pm MT on 10/04/21 – approx. 11:59 pm MT on 03/31/22. For Official Rules including how to enter, entry limitations, Earth Force and Chipotle’s usage rights, and prize descriptions, visit Sponsor: Earth Force, Inc.

Congratulations!  Carla Scocchi and her husband Seth welcomed their new little girl on Tuesday, November 16, at exactly midnight.  Alina Evelyn Murray weighed in at 8 lbs. and 5 oz.  Elara is enjoying being a big sister! We are very happy for the family!

Retirement Alas, my retirement has arrived. I loved my job and I loved working with suchJoyce F wonderful people for over 18 years –  not just my co-workers but all of this 4-H family.  What a blessing to be able to say that! I am bittersweet about retiring, so very anxious for the next chapter in my life but will truly miss all of you. I’m also looking forward to having the time and the freedom to pursue my hobbies and interests including travel and hanging out with family and friends. I have such wonderful memories of Style Revue, Cloverfest, the Blue Hill Fair, the Leaders’ Banquets, and more.  I’m now enrolling children whose parents I enrolled in when I first started my job – It’s fun to see it come full circle!  I was privileged to be part of this team.
This is just till we meet again – not good bye.  I want to continue being involved with 4-H.  As Carol Burnett used to say, “I’m so glad we had this time together!” Thanks for everything!  Joyce

With Deep Sympathy – our condolences to the friends and family of 4-H leader Dwight Sargent who passed away unexpectedly on Nov. 21st. Dwight was a 4-H leader for 43 yearsDwight as well as a member of the Hancock County 4-H Leaders’ Association. He had previously served as president for a number of years and most recently as a board member. He also had been on the Hancock County Extension Association Board for 30 years and served as Livestock Superintendent for Blue Hill Fair since 2011 and was a member of the Board of Directors. He will be remembered for his wonderful support to 4-H, the Blue Hill Fair, and his devotion to his family. Hancock County 4-H will miss him dearly.  His family is planning a celebration of life in the spring.

Club News

Peninsula Explorers Orienteering

BHHT Peninsula Explorers – We had our final Orienteering meeting yesterday and had a wet and wild time in the woods. These kids have all gained a lot of great new skills including map reading, using a compass, reading the landscape, and more!
Submitted by club leader, Chrissy Allen

State News

  1. Sustainable Fishing: Maine 4-H STEM Toolkit of the Month
    Each month we will be highlighting a different 4-H STEM Toolkit available from UMaine Cooperative Extension 4-H Program!In this new, innovative toolkit youth will explore a variety of animals that are fished for in Maine and the various methods of how to find them. Bodies of water are huge! How can we narrow down where fish could be found and if they are actually there? In a series of 8 activities, youth will create maps with fish species, scavenge for evidence of animals and model how DNA can be used to determine whether an animal is present in a body of water. By exploring relevant phenomena, youth have the opportunity to persevere through puzzling activities, catch each other’s fish populations and investigate as crime scene scientists. Throughout these fishing-related activities, youth will consider which practices are sustainable versus unsustainable, working towards bettering the ways we interact with the environment and fishing industries. Run, don’t walk – this toolkit will be coming early 2022!Learn more about this, and other 4-H STEM Toolkits online, where you can see what is available for different age groups or topic areas.
  2. Save the Date: New Virtual 4-H Dog SPIN Club!
    A new virtual 4-H dog SPIN club will be starting on January 22 at 9 am and will continue monthly on Saturdays. This club is open to anyone state-wide, 4-H ages 9 and up. A dog is not required to join the club. Stay tuned for more information. If you are interested, contact Emily Mott at j.mott@maine.eduto be added to our mailing list for when more information becomes available.
  3. Congratulations to Maine Communication Science Team Members
    The 1st Annual Northeast Region 4-H Presentation Fest was held virtually on September 18th with 37 participants from 10 different states. The Maine Communication Science Team sent five youth to compete in their choice of categories; Prepared Speech or Illustrated Talk/Demonstration. Maine Communication Science Team members Eliza R. from Penobscot County and Nathan D. from Knox/Lincoln Counties took the top scores in Formal Speech and Illustrated Talk/Demonstration respectively.  Honorable mention to Maddie G. from Androscoggin/Sagadahoc Counties who took the top adult evaluation score in her cohort. We are very proud of all of the Maine 4-H youth who gave their best to compete at this next level competition!
  4. Important Changes for 2022 Fryeburg Fair Market Steer Intent to Sell Forms
    There are a number of very important updates for 2022:

    • This year the deadline for the form is December 31, 2021(postmarked), and the form MUST come with the bill of sale/statement of value of the cow, as well as the photos of the front and side view of the animal.
    • We have an ONLINE form!  The updated online form, as well as the printable word/pdf versions, are on the Beef page. There is also a link to the updated regulations for both Steers and Lambs at Fryeburg. Youth enrolled in 4-H outside of Maine (New Hampshire) will need to complete the paper forms and submit them to their local county office.
    • Youth who submit the intent will need to complete the regular Animal Approval form and list “Fryeburg Sale” as the show class for the animal.
  5. National Youth Agri-Science and Healthy Living Summit Applications for 2022 Are Available Now!
    here are currently 12 scholarships available through funding from the Maine 4-H Foundation to send youth to the Washington, D.C. area for the Agri-Science and Healthy Living Summits in early 2022. Attendees will learn more about their area of interest by attending career panels, interactive workshops, and visiting related agencies throughout D.C. The Summits were created to empower youth to be well-informed citizens, expand engineering and agriculture experience, and increase connections to living a healthy lifestyle, all while being actively engaged in their communities.Healthy Living: February 10 – 13, 2022
    Agri-Science: March 10 – 13, 2022
    Eligibility: Youth ages 14 – 18. Enrolled in 4-H by December 31, 2021
    Participant Cost: $150.00 (Maine 4-H Foundation will cover the remainder of registration and flight costs – approximately $1,000.00).
    Maine 4-H Summit Series Application 2022 Application (Google Form): This is a combined application for both the Agri-Science and Healthy Living Summits. For more information about the National Youth Summits please visit here. If any youth would like to attend, but do not receive the scholarship funding, they may self-fund and attend. Counties are also welcome to provide full or partial-scholarships to youth. Email or call Sara,, 207-781-6099, for more details on these options, or with any questions.  Applications and Recommendations due by December 15, 2021.
  6. Maine 4-H Foundation Scholarships
    The Maine 4-H Foundation is pleased to announce a number of scholarships available to 4-H members. They range in value from $1,000 to $2,500. Donors from around the state have been very generous in supporting our 4-H seniors as they pursue their dreams and aspirations. Scholarships are due March 1, 2022, to your county office. Please visit the Maine 4-H Foundation website.
  7. 4-H Pitch Project
    The Youth Trustees have established a fund to support young entrepreneurs in 4-H. Pitch us your idea for a business and we may fund the start-up idea. Check out the Pitch project.
  8. 4-H Club Resources
    The Norma Hardison Fund has been created to support 4-H club special projects. 4-H Club Creativity Grant application ideas should tie into the 4-H program priorities for Maine, including club and community learning projects, philanthropic projects that engage members in the community supporting 4-H program work, and/or new creative educational ideas. Funds can be requested for amounts up to $200; on a rare occasion, the grant request may be considered for more than $200. Sponsor: Maine 4-H Foundation Youth Trustees in Philanthropy. Application Form.
  9. 4-H Service Innovative Education, and Philanthropy Grants
    Grant application ideas should tie into the 4-H program priorities for Maine including club and community service learning projects, philanthropic projects that engage members in the community supporting 4-H program work, and/or new creative educational ideas. Funds can be requested for amounts from $100 to $500; on a rare occasion, the grant request may be considered for more than $500. Sponsor: Maine 4-H Foundation Youth Trustees in Philanthropy. Application Form.

Leaders Meeting Minutes


There was no meeting in November 2021. The next scheduled meeting: January 11, 2022.