December 2023 4-H Newsletter

4-H Happenings

A monthly newsletter for Hancock County 4-H Members

Table of Contents

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

Upcoming Dates to Remember

December 15 – Ellsworth Library After School Workshop 2:00 pm
December 25 & 26 – Office Closed for Holiday
December 29
  State Deadline for Re-enrollment-No Exceptions
January 1 – Office Closed for Holiday
January 5 – Intent to Sell Beef at Fryeburg Forms Due
January 7 – Public Speaking Workshop at the Extension Office 2:00–4:00 pm
January 9 – 4-H Leaders Association Meeting 6:30 pm
January 15 – Maine 4-H Beef ESE Intent to Participate form Due

County News

Support needed for 4-H Alumnus

Donnie smiling at the camera while helping his sister pan for rocks
Rosie EvansDonnie pictured on a recent family trip with his younger sister, Willow.

It is with a heavy heart that we share some news about a 4-H Alumnus. Many of you will remember Donnie Evans, a Hancock County 4-H alumnus who is the son of former Hancock County 4-H CEA, Rosie Evans, and a full-time student at UMaine in Orono. Donnie was a leader during his time in Maine 4-H, actively participating in Public Speaking, National Trips, ESE, and much more. On November 14, Donnie suffered a large blood clot in his heart and was life-flighted to Portland for open heart surgery. Coming out of surgery, Donnie persevered with all the strength and faith you’d expect from such an exceptional person and began the slow road to yet another recovery. However, just six days later, on November 20th, Donnie was life-flighted yet again, this time to Westchester Medical Center after suffering more clots. Following a second surgery, his vitals declined, necessitating life support. Incredibly, Donnie was able to come off of support on Thanksgiving day. However, he continues to face difficulties in maintaining his oxygen saturation levels independently and is currently in the ICU.

Members of our Hancock County 4-H family have started a GoFundMe campaign to help support him and his family financially. I know many of you would be interested in supporting them, so please share this as you wish and keep Donnie and the Evans family in your hearts and minds this holiday season.


Another 4-H year began on October 1! Re-enrollment instructions have been sent out, so be sure to check your inbox! All volunteers and members must complete re-enrollment as soon as possible to continue 4-H programming and to continue to receive important 4-H event information.

If you are experiencing issues using the online portal, Z Suite, please get in touch with Andrea at 207-667-8212 or so we can help you through the process.

Youth running down the hallway with cardboard big foot feetCloverfest Recognition Celebration 

What an absolutely magical day celebrating our county at Cloverfest! We’re so thankful for the ability to reschedule the event and make sure our community felt safe celebrating together. As I’m sure all who attended know, we had a blast! We can’t wait to see even more of you next Cloverfest for round 2! If you couldn’t be there, here’s what you missed…

The Highlights:

Youth looking down at a squid partially dissectedWe celebrated 4-H youth who have shown up in the past year by getting involved in various events, growing in their goals, and being kind and helpful to others. We have some fantastic youth in Hancock County 4-H and are grateful to be a part of their journey.

We celebrated volunteers who have marked one year with 4-H, quite a few with 20 years with 4-H, and even one Norma Hardison who celebrated 55 years with 4-H. Wow!!

A parent and her daughter working together to stack cups using a rubber band toolOur classroom was then transformed into STEAM stations with the help of our volunteers. We had a VR field trip, squid dissections, minute-to-win it games, 4-H cornhole, abstract art lessons, a candy structure challenge, and an appreciation station where kids and adults wrote thank you notes to the wonderful volunteers that make things happen. These will be distributed to our leaders, and we think it’s something to continue at every event we hold.

Steer Ticket Seller: We must also call out Oliva D for being our #1 fundraiser this year. Olivia sold the most steer tickets in the county, and we expect her to be back next summer to defend her title! Thank you, Oliva, for putting in the time and effort to get out there and sell. It’s your actions that allow us to continue to bring fun events and workshops to Hancock County.

Ruby holding up her Dwight Sargent Leadership Award trophyDwight Sargent Leadership Award: This award is presented to a youth who demonstrates the leadership, skill, and community involvement that 4-H is all about. While I may not have known Dwight personally, I do know that he would be thrilled to call out this youth for her actions, charisma, and professionalism at the Blue Hill Fair this year. The youth we are presenting the award to this year is Ruby B! Ruby took time out of her busy schedule to volunteer multiple days at the fair. She helped us set up the Exhibit Hall, showing care and consideration for her peers’ projects. She volunteered at the Food Booth and Steer Ticket table to secure the funds we raised for county events. She aided staff and other volunteers at the 4-H Touch Tank, happy to share information with others. She even volunteered to help us on clean-up day at the Exhibit Hall, despite us having it already handled. Anyone who needed help knew they could rely on Ruby to deliver, and for that reason and so many more, we are happy to commend her hard work. Ruby, you are a passionate individual, and we are so lucky for your dedication. Thank you again for all that you bring to Hancock County 4-H!

4-H youth posing with 4-H staff member and volunteer after receiving livestock awardRazor Crossman Showmanship Award: The Razor Crossman Award asks a lot of its candidates throughout the Blue Hill Fair. This award is presented to a 4-H youth who demonstrates a variety of livestock-related skills. When the committee decides on a recipient, they examine the behavior of the youth throughout the fair, the respect and care they show to their animals and stalls, how they interact with the public, if they’re willing to answer questions and educate those around them, and many other essential life skills. The youth selected this year is Shelby G! Not only did Shelby prepare and show her own animals at the fair, but she helped out other youth, lent out her animals to other youth for events, picked up shifts at the food booth, conversed with fairgoers, and even raised the steer for our 4-H Steer Ticket raffle! Thank you for showing us it’s possible to do it all, Shelby!

4-H Volunteer using VR gogglesVolunteer Milestones: Thank you again to all of our 4-H volunteers. Whether you support our youth personally or behind the scenes at our events, know your time is appreciated. Leaders who have reached significant milestones this year through their volunteer service with 4-H are listed below.

First Year: Jo Ann Joray, Andrea Mahoney
Five Years: Kristin Beauchamp, Shannon Byers, Seth Murray
Ten Years: Jessica St. Amand
Twenty Years: Frank Butler, Bill Carney, Brenda Jordan, Lee Sargent
Twenty-Five Years: Sheila O’Donnell, Terry Swazey
Thirty- Five Years: Karen Bender
Fifty-Five Years: Norma Hardison

Our hearts are happy and thankful for this incredible day with our 4-H community.

4-H Event Bingo

Hancock County 4-H is bringing something new to the table this year and it’s 4-H Bingo! If you haven’t already seen our new Bingo cards, you can check them out here. They’re a fun tool our youth can use to keep track of what events they can participate in throughout 4-H, and win some neat prizes along the way! Bingo cards will be mailed out to all our independent 4-H members, and those who are in a club can receive theirs from their club leaders at their next club meeting.

4-H After School

This month at the Ellsworth Public Library, join Leah in creating a personalized vision board and set goals in preparation for the new year!

Last month, our group practiced our laboratory skills through a strawberry DNA extraction activity and made bracelets to learn about DNA base pairs.

Every Friday from 2:00 – 3:30 pm, the library will offer workshops for elementary and middle school youth. On the 3rd Friday of every month, 4-H will be the featured presenter. Hope to see you there!

Photo Contest

Our judges are working hard on photo feedback, but while we wait to announce those results, I’d like to thank all the youth who participated in the 4-H Photo Contest this year! The images you submitted were wonderful, and I can’t wait to see what you all capture in the future. If you’d like to see this year’s lovely submissions, take a walk through our virtual art gallery!

Photo Contest Scavenger Hunt!

Join our monthly newsletter photo scavenger hunt! We encourage all 4-Hers to be inspired by our monthly themes and snap the perfect pictures. Then, you can submit your photos on the photo contest webpage for a chance to be featured in the following month’s newsletter!

December Themes
  • Holiday cheer
  • Lights at night
  • Winter Wonderland
  • Once upon a time

Club News

Lock Stock & Barrel

Image of a green and duck print quilt being raffled by the Lock Stock and Barrel 4-H ClubThe Lock Stock and Barrel for 4H Club will be doing a raffle for a fundraiser. The club will be raffling off a wildlife wall hanging along with a couple of other items. The raffle tickets will be available in mid-September, and the drawing will be in December. Tickets are $1 each or 6/$5. The club would like to thank Holly Gordon Lutz for donating material and making the wall hanging. Contact Becky Ames at 207.567.3066 for more information.

Horse of Course

At the last Horse of Course meeting, the club watched a few videos on showmanship to learn about how it works and ask questions. We also watched videos of the horses at the Bagaduce River Equine Rescue and some on dressage and barrel racing. We have been invited to Lee Sargent’s barn in the spring so the members can learn in person with her horse, Chubbs. The youth also had a craft for the night, which was making a collage of horse pictures they cut out of magazines.

State News

  • 4-H Volunteer Workshops for the 2023-2024 4-H Year
    We invite you to participate in our 4-H Volunteer Connections virtual workshops! Join other 4-H volunteers from the North East region to learn, share and engage with one another on various topics related to 4-H. All workshops are free and offered via Zoom in the evenings from 6:30 – 8:00 pm.

    Topics include:
    January 10 – Creating LGBTQ+ Inclusive Programs
    February 13 – Be a Positive Communicator
    March 12 – Finding Space for Mental Wellness in Every Program
    April 9 – Animal Science: Strong Relationships and Sportsmanship

    Click here to register now! Come to one or come to all! We look forward to connecting with YOU!  
  • 4-H Tick Project
    The 4-H Tick Project is a community science project engaging K-12 youth and educators, made possible through a partnership between 4-H Youth Development, UMaine Cooperative Extension Tick Lab, Maine Forest Tick Survey, and members of the Learning Ecosystems Northeast partnership. The project provides youth an opportunity to explore ticks and tick-borne diseases, which is a connected story of climate, ecosystem change, and public health.

    All educators interested in teaching about ticks in Maine are encouraged to participate in the project at no cost to you. This project is great for 4-H clubs, SPIN clubs, homeschool groups, and more. For more information and to register, visit the 4-H Tick Project webpage.
  • Fryeburg Market Animal Intents Now Available
    Intent to sell forms for Fryeburg market projects are now available at Steers must be owned and in the possession of the 4-H member by December 31st and intent forms, including RFID tags, bill of sale, and photos of the steer must be submitted by January 5th. Lambs must be owned and in the possession of the 4-H member by June 1st and intent forms, including bill of sale, scrapie tag number, and photos of the animal, must be submitted by June 5th. For more information on 4-H market animal projects, please get in touch with your county cooperative extension office or call 207.581.3877.
  • Maine 4-H ESE Beef Intent to Participate Forms are Now Available
    The 2024 Maine 4-H Beef ESE Intent to Participate form is now available online and must be submitted by January 15, 2024. This is a requirement for all youth intending to participate as members of the Maine 4-H Beef Team at the Eastern States Exposition in September. Youth must be 12-18 years old as of December 31, 2023, and have completed one year in a beef project prior to this year. Please contact Kristen Grondin,, 207.581.8193, with any questions.
  • Ignite by 4-H
    Who is eligible: All youth of high school age (14-18)
    When is the event: March 13-17
    Where: Washington DC metro area at the Westin Washington D.C. Downtown Hotel/Marriott Marquis Washington, D.C.
    Timeline: Applications need to be completed by Dec 23rd
    Cost: The Maine 4-H Foundation has graciously funded the majority of the registration and travel costs for youth.  Youth will be responsible for $300 towards the cost of the trip. We encourage youth to reach out to the County offices and programs to seek out additional funding support. If youth need help or assistance please have them contact your imagination and passion!
    Ignite by 4-H, an inclusive teen event, returns March 2024 to Washington, D.C. Join us for four days of inspiring speakers, workshop sessions, activities, and entertainment. The summit will provide high-school-aged youth from across the country the opportunity to explore the best 4-H has to offer in STEM, Agriscience, and Healthy Living. Don’t miss this opportunity to discover exciting career paths, make connections, and create an action plan to ignite change in your community! Other info can be seen on the official website here: are on a Google Form here.  or cut and paste this URL: .
    If there are any questions or concerns please get in touch with


Leaders Meeting Minutes

There was not a November Leaders Meeting. The next Leaders Meeting will be in January.