April 2024 4-H Newsletter

4-H Happenings

A monthly newsletter for Hancock County 4-H Members


Table of Contents

Upcoming Dates| County NewsState News | Leaders Meeting Minutes


Upcoming Dates to Remember

April 5 – Extension Homemakers Scholarship Due to Office
April 6 – State Public Speaking Tournament in Orono
April 8 – Solar Eclipse in Maine
April 9 – Hancock County Leader’s Association Scholarship Due to Office
April 9 – Eclipse Debrief Workshop at the Extension Office (4:30 – 5:30 pm)
April 9 – 4-H Leaders Meeting (6:30 pm)
April 13 – Dairy Judging Contest/ESE Tryouts (See State News)
April 15 – Patriots Day, Office Closed
April 19 – Ellsworth Library After School Workshop (2:00 – 3:30 pm)
April 24 to May 5 – Paper Clover at Tractor Supply
April 25-27 – Virtual 4-H Rainbow Summit
May 1 – Deadline for Equine ESE Intent Forms (See State News)
May 9 – Style Revue Dress Rehersal (4:30 – 5:30 pm))
May 10 – Style Revue Showcase (6:30 – 8:00 pm)


County News

Public Speaking

Hancock County showed up and spoke up at our county Public Speaking Tournament! We are so proud of everyone who participated. It takes a lot to speak in front of a crowd, and your courage does not go unnoticed. We especially want to congratulate Robert M, Noah R, Coryann S, Annabelle S, and Kowen S for qualifying to move on to the state Public Speaking Tournament.

Public Speaking youth showing how to straw weave
4-H Staff - Leah M“How to Straw Weave”
Public Speaking youth holding up sewn stuffed fish to demonstrate fishing safety
4-H Staff - Leah M“How to Catch a Fish Safely”
Public speaking youth holding up their finished fruit face snack
4-H Staff - Leah M“How to Make Graham Cracker Animals”

Paper Clover

The Spring Paper Clover campaign will be held April 24 through May 5, with the opportunity to donate to 4-H in-store and online. We encourage clubs to take part in this opportunity and use it to foster community involvement. Let us know if you need help making a connection with your local Tractor Supply!

Maine CDC Poster Contest

Tick ID activity for youthOkay Hancock County, it’s time to show off what the 4-H Tick Project has taught you! Each year, Maine CDC hosts an annual Lyme Disease Awareness Month poster contest for K-8th graders in Maine. Ticks and tick-borne diseases are an ever-increasing threat, especially among children in this age group. The topic of this year’s contest is “Little Tick, Big Deal.” Posters will be accepted through Tuesday, April 30, 2024. Only one poster per participant will be accepted, and a signed release waiver must accompany the posters. Winners in each category receive a one-day park pass to any Maine State Park. One grand-prize-winning poster will be chosen to feature as the 2024 Lyme Disease Awareness poster for Maine CDC. Visit the Maine CDC website to see last year’s submissions and learn more.

Style Revue

The due date to register for Style Revue has passed, but if inspiration has struck and you’d like to participate in this year’s Style Revue, please contact the office. For those of you already registered, make sure you’re making progress on your project; the showcase is only a month away!

Please drop all projects off at the office by Friday, May 3, at 4:00 pm for judging. We will bring your lovely creations to dress rehearsal and the Style Revue Showcase.

Save the Date: Style Revue will take place at Cave Hill Elementary in Eastbrook on Friday, May 10, with a dress rehearsal on May 9.

4-H After School

Two youth drawing their eclipse corona predictions on black paper with white chalk
4-H Staff - Andrea M“Draw your eclipse predictions”

Great news! The 4-H After School is growing! We’ve heard your requests and will now offer the monthly workshops on another date each month.

In March, youth at the office prepared for the solar eclipse (can you believe it is only a few days away?) by creating solar eclipse masks, so they could watch the eclipse in style. At the library, youth learned what an eclipse is, built models to represent an eclipse, and learned basic eclipse safety.

This month, our office workshop will take place the day after the eclipse, so be prepared to debrief your eclipse experience while creating a UV bead craft. At the library, we’re going to be celebrating spring by learning about pollinators and building bugs of our own. Hope to see you there!

Hancock County Food Drive Read-A-Thon

Throughout April, K-8 readers can give back to their community and win prizes by fundraising for every minute they spend reading. The top 3 participants who spend the most time reading will each receive a gift certificate to a Hancock County bookstore. Check out the Hancock County Read-A-Thon website to learn how to get started!

Photo Scavenger Hunt!

Image of a melting brook, partially iced over
4-Her - Lumi“So Long Winter, Hello Spring”

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! Thank you to Lumi for sharing the amazing sign of spring captured for the scavenger hunt.

April Themes
  • Eclipse Experience
  • What I’m Doing in 4-H
  • What’s Up With The Weather?
  • That’s a Funny Shape

Virtual Rainbow Summit

The Virtual Rainbow Summit is an annual free 4-H event for LGBTQIA+ youth, families, professionals and allies, providing resources and networking opportunities to benefit the physical, mental, emotional and social health and wellness of all members of the LGBTQIA+ community. If you’re interested in attending, register soon on their website!

4-H Safe Space Logo

4-H Event Bingo

Hancock County 4-H is bringing something new to the table this year, and it’s 4-H Bingo! You can check out our new Bingo cards here if you haven’t already seen them. 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.


State News

Are you ready?! How to Prepare for the Maine Solar Eclipse: First, it is good to know some background information about what you will see on Monday, April 8th. A solar eclipse occurs when the moon moves between the earth and sun. At the right angle, the moon blocks the sun’s light from reaching Earth and causes a solar eclipse. A total solar eclipse occurs when the Sun, Moon and Earth are in a direct line. It is visible from only certain locations on Earth when the center of the Moon’s shadow hits the earth, the sky goes dark and we can experience changes in temperature and sounds. Watch this solar eclipse animation from NASA for a visual.

Second, in order to watch the solar eclipse, you will need to wear eclipse glasses or use a pinhole camera. This means at all times except for totality when the moon completely covers the Sun’s face (yes, even if it’s cloudy or raining).

  • The only safe way to view partial phases of the eclipse is with viewing (eclipse) glasses or
    through a handheld solar viewing (i.e. a pinhole camera)
  • Do not view partial eclipse phases with sunglasses, through a camera lens, binoculars or a
    telescope.
  • If your viewing glasses are damaged in any way, discard them and do not use them.
  • You can view the eclipse directly without eye protection only when the moon completely
    blocks the Sun’s face (totality)

Third, plan ahead for viewing the eclipse. If you are traveling, be aware that Maine is expecting an influx of travelers, so plan for traffic, packed gas stations and restaurants. Here are a few suggested items to bring with you to experience the solar eclipse:

  • Eclipse viewing glasses and/or pinhole camera
  • Appropriate clothing for the weather
  • Snacks, water
  • First Aid kit
  • A comfortable spot for viewing (ex: folding chairs, blankets for warmth)

4-H Market Lamb Intent for Fryeburg Fair: Youth planning to participate in the Market Lamb program at Fryeburg Fair need to submit the 2024 Fryeburg Fair Market Lamb Intent form by June 5th. An online form is available, otherwise youth can print and mail a copy downloaded from the website.

4-H Dairy Judging Contest: The 2024 Maine 4-H Dairy Judging Contest will be held on April 13th at Quimby Farm in Albion, ME and Springdale Farm in Waldo, ME. The event is open to all enrolled 4-H dairy members and will serve as the official tryouts for the 2024 Maine 4-H Eastern States Dairy Judging Team.

For a complete schedule for the day please visit https://extension.umaine.edu/4h/animal-science-resources/dairy/judging/. For more information or to request a reasonable accommodation, please contact Sadee Mehuren at sadee.mehuren@maine.edu or 207.342.5971.

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 a variety of topics related to 4-H. All workshops are free and offered via Zoom in the evenings from 6:30 – 8:00 pm.

Topics include:
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 is a great project for 4-H clubs, SPIN clubs, homeschool groups, and more. For more information and to register, visit the 4-H Tick Project webpage.

Equine ESE Intent forms Due May 1, 2024: The 2024 Eastern States (ESE) Horse Intent Form is now live and online.  The form indicates your interest in participating in the Eastern States Team Tryout event this summer.  The event this year will offer a weekend opportunity for youth to qualify and to learn and grow while getting to know other youth who are also interested in trying out. Youth can try out to be a Teen Leader (4-H age 12 and up) or to be a Rider or Driver (4-H age 13 and up).

More details will go out to those who fill out the intent forms in the registration packets.  The intent form does not bind you to the tryout event. Applications will be used to determine the event roster. Here is the ESE intent form to be filled out by May 1st.  Approval forms must also be filled out and sent to your county office by May 1st as well.

If you have any questions, please reach out to Tara Marble at tara.marble@maine.edu or 207.778.4650.

New SPIN Club: Farm Animal Care – FUNdamentals: Are you interested in learning about livestock animals (such as cows, goats or sheep)? How to care for them? How do you know what to feed them, how do you actually do regular health checks and have proper housing? Join the 4-H Animal Science SPIN club. We will have 3 virtual sessions focused on what livestock need to live a healthy life and one field day that provides hands-on experience. Set yourself up for success in your 4-H project by learning the basics of animal care. Participants do not need to have any prior animal experience or currently own livestock to participate. This is a beginner/introductory level program.

Virtual sessions will be on Wednesdays, April 24, May 1, and May 8, 2024. An optional in-person field day will take place Saturday, May 4. This club is open to youth ages 9 – 18, space is limited to 15 participants. More information and registration are available online. Registration closes April 8, 2024.

Save the Date! Maine 4-H Days is Happening in 2024: Get ready 4-H families! On Friday evening, July 19 – Saturday, July 20, Maine 4-H Days will be back at Windsor Fairgrounds.

Animal Science tracks are being scheduled from Friday, July 19 – Sunday, July 21. Workshop sessions for Saturday are still needed. If you know anyone who might want to run a
workshop on Saturday, please reach out to Karen Giles via email or phone: 207.474.9622. All workshop forms are due by May 1, 2024. Registration for the event for 4-H’ers and their families will be opening in mid-May. More information is coming soon. We can’t wait to see you there!


Leaders Meeting Minutes

Hancock County 4-H Leaders Meeting of March 18th, 2024

Present:  Larry King, Lee Sargent, Terry Swazey, Brenda Jordan, Joannie Jodrey, Lisa Carney (virtual), Elaine Gokey (virtual), 4-H staff Leah McCluskey and Andrea Mahoney, and one guest (10). 

The Secretary’s and Treasurer’s reports for February were accepted as written.

Club Reports: 

  • Horse of Course
    • Meeting next week (delayed)
    • Terry found resources for drawing horses to share with the group
    • Terry is also going to bring coloring pages for some of the younger members
    • Introducing kids to a new horse breed

Old Business:

  • Newsletter costs
    • ~$60 a month, already done two months
    • Sue says to make the check out to Hancock County Extension Association
    • Motion to pay for the newsletter through the 4-H year (October)
  • Revisiting OFD
    • July 27th 
    • Leah will communicate with Kristin that clubs are interested in participating
  • Senior Scholarships
    • No response from 4-H Foundation… Laurie is difficult to get in contact with, but Carla and I will keep asking
  • June Jamboree 
    • Fill out the form as soon as possible so the Salesforce team can compile the information
    • Terry has secured the porta-potties
    • Larry has donated $200 to support June Jamboree costs
  • Style Revue
    • Brenda will find judges for Style Revue
    • Leah and Andrea will send out a reminder email about the upcoming due date

New Business:

  • You’ve got mail!

Office Business:

  • State public speaking (April 6th)
    • Lee and Terry will be timer tabulators
    • Lisa and MM as room host and TT, respectively
  • Insurance quote should be coming soon, Andrea will communicate with Terry when it does
  • Maine 4-H Days (July 19th-21st)
  • New volunteer! Merrin at the BHHT 
  • Summer School programming at RSU24? 
    • Leah will connect with Brenda to see if 4-H can be a part of this

Adjourned 7:19

Respectfully submitted by Lisa Carney, Secretary