May 2020

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Be sure to scroll down to see State 4-H Office Core Newsletter, too!

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Dear 4-Hers and Families,

As we prepare this newsletter, we know that many things will be different from the way they usually are as we enter our late spring/early summer activities. Clubs have been meeting by ZOOM or taking some time off. Our state public speaking tournament happened virtually! Look for more virtual 4-H opportunities in the coming weeks. We are not aware of any of our 4-H families who have contracted the COVID-19 virus, so we can be grateful for that. However, we must continue to follow the guidelines from the CDC and State of Maine to be sure we all continue to be safe and healthy. Please contact us if you have questions, concerns, or just want to chat!

Best wishes,

Kathryn and Cindy

4-H Staff in Knox and Lincoln Counties

All 4-H In-person Club Meetings and Events Canceled Until Further Notice

Given the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation in Maine, UMaine Extension is canceling all 4-H club meetings and in-person events until further notice (no matter what size group).

Coronavirus | Airborne Disease Surveillance Epidemiology Program | MeCDC

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention–Coronavirus Summary

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention–Coronavirus Fact Sheet

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention–What the Public Should Do

U.S. Department of State–China Travel Advisory

All county offices are closed until at least May 31, but most staff are working our regular hours from home. We will continue to keep you updated as we learn more information. Please contact the county office via email if you have specific questions. You can leave a voice mail message on the main office phone, but it may not be heard for several days.

Upcoming Events and Important Dates

May 14  KLLA Meeting 6pm, via ZOOM ONLY 6pm

May 22  NEW EXTENDED DEADLINE Applications for National Trips due (see article in State News)

June 1  NEW DATE ESE Horse Animal Approval forms due, packets due for tryouts

June 19  KLLA Meeting 6pm

June 30  4-H Animal Approval and Lease forms due (some commodity exceptions; refer to the 4-H Animal Science Resource page) – Find tips on filling out these forms in an article below.

May Birthdays

Happy Birthday to Raven T., Madelyn D., Sydney B., Xavier C., Kyra B., Paytyn D., Anna P., Anthony D., and Arianna C.!

2020 Union Fair Update

The following statement was posted on the Face Book page of Union Fair/The Maine Wild Blueberry Festival on May 9, 2020: “After much discussion, the Trustees of Union Fair have decided to postpone the 2020 fair to 2021 due to Covid-19. The safety of our volunteers, exhibitors, and general public is our prime concern. In addition, it would be nearly impossible to have an event of this size under the current mandated guidelines. We want to thank our volunteers, employees, exhibitors, vendors, sponsors and other supporters of our great Fair and we look forward to a safe and healthy 2021.”

How Are You Doing 4-H?

Although the Union Fair and many other events that 4-H looks forward to each year will not be possible in the same format we are used to, 4-H will continue to offer distance-safe activities and learning opportunities throughout the summer. You can stay in the loop by reading the monthly newsletters, watching your email and following county and statewide 4-H Facebook pages.

Do you have ideas about offerings you would like to see? How are you continuing your project work this summer? If that seems too difficult, that is OK, too! If you have some ideas to share, or need some support in figuring it out, please contact Kathryn or Cindy. We would love to hear your creative ideas and help you in any way we can!

Online Club Meetings

At this time, we are all adjusting to our new realities. Club leaders may be wondering HOW to connect with folks in their clubs during this time. The platform Zoom is a very popular option for many people. It can be used over and over again and allows free usage for meetings less than an hour. Leaders can sign up for the free version here: and send out links to their members who will not need to “sign up” if they do not want to. A short video tutorial has been posted on how to use Zoom (if you never have before).

Facebook Messenger also allows you to create groups and do video calls with many users, and this is also free. The first 6 participants will show up on video but group up to 50 can have access to all the audio capabilities. Users need to have a Facebook Messenger account to access this. Also, this video feature works best on the Google Chrome browser.

Contact Cindy or Kathryn if you have questions or need ideas about safely connecting with your club!

State 4-H Virtual Public Speaking Tournament a Success!

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Eight Knox-Lincoln 4-H members participated in the first-ever State 4-H Virtual Public Speaking Tournament on April 25! Twenty-eight 4-H members from around the state participated from their homes using the Zoom online platform. A virtual awards ceremony was live-streamed over Zoom, Facebook and YouTube. View the recording from the Maine 4-H Public Speaking Tournament page. The day went quite smoothly and all participants should be proud of their achievements! Four Knox-Lincoln 4-H members, plus one alternate, qualified for the Communication Science Team, which plans to participate in the Eastern States Exposition in Springfield, MA in September! A big thanks to volunteers from our counties, including judges Linda Bonin and Jesse Bonin.

Great job, Knox-Lincoln participants! Junior Demonstration–Sabrinnah D., Junior Illustrated Talk–Anthony D.; Senior Illustrated Talk–Anthony B., Julia B., Jeremy D., Nathan D., Adam E., Elizabeth E.; Senior Team Illustrated Talk—Nathan D. & Bradley S. (Franklin County).

Communication Science Team members: Anthony B., Julia B., Nathan D., Elizabeth E.;
Alternate: Anthony D.

Tips for Filling Out the 4-H Animal Approval Form

Any youth age 9-18 who plans to participate in 4-H livestock shows in 2020 must complete and submit an Approval Form for 4-H Animal Show. If a member is leasing an animal to show, a Maine 4-H Contract for Rental/Lease of All Animals is also required. Animal Approval forms are NOT required for showing rabbits, poultry or small domestic pets (except dogs, which DO require the Animal Approval form).

Both of these forms can be downloaded and are due June 30 for MOST commodities and shows. Some early shows require this form earlier. Please refer to the 4-H Animal Science Resources and individual show guidelines for specific information.

Look on the back of the AAF form to be sure of what is required for your project animal. HORSE: Those enrolled in the Horse Project, be sure to include a current copy of your Coggins Test and a photo of your Horse for identification purposes. DOG: Dog projects also need a photo.

If you are having problems with your Intent or AAF forms or due dates, please contact this office. We all must be flexible in these unusual times. We will contact your leader for a signature if you cannot get the signature because of social distancing.

When filling out your Animal Approval Form, please keep the following in mind:

  • When downloading, be sure to select “shrink to fit page” so that information is not cut off the edges.
  • Print form 2-sided.
  • Your club leader (or advisor for independent member) must sign on the line immediately after last entry in the list of animals.
  • 2-sided, signed ORIGINAL forms must be received at your county Extension office no later than the due date (Again, if you are having trouble meeting the deadline, or getting a leader signature, mail them anyway and contact this office). 4-H staff will keep original for office records and return an official, embossed photocopy to you. This embossed copy is what you will need to have with you each time you participate in a 4-H livestock show.
  • If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact your club leader or 4-H staff.

State 4-H Office Core Newsletter

2020 Maine 4-H Days Canceled

Maine 4-H Days, originally set to take place July 16-19, 2020 at the Windsor Fairgrounds has been canceled. We look forward to seeing you all in 2021!

Daily Virtual 4-H Offerings!

As a part of UMaine Cooperative Extension’s response to the changes in the world due to the novel coronavirus, we have created a weekly schedule of activities to keep youth engaged in learning:

Monday: “Mainely Dish” Mondays – nutrition professionals from the UMaine Extension Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) share videos of easy and healthy snacks kids can make at home.

Tuesday: QuaranTEEN Virtual Science Cafes – Join us each Tuesday where you will meet scientists, learn about how they ended up at UMaine and how they became involved in their work/research, and participate in informal discussions. So, sign up and learn some cool science! Registration is required.

Wednesday: “Wednesdays in the Woods” Outdoor Activities – join the 4-H Camps and Learning Centers for outdoor adventures.  Live on Wednesdays on the UMaine 4-H Camp & Learning Center at Tanglewood Facebook page , join Hannah Raymond as she does different outdoor activities you can do in your own back yard! Activity sheets can be downloaded and printed.

Thursday: Growing Maine Gardeners – Join UMaine Extension Horticulturist Kate Garland and her kids in videos that introduce gardeners to fun projects and new techniques. New videos and activity sheets are posted every Thursday.

Friday: Learn at Home with 4-H Friday Fun! Videos – Each Friday, watch for a new hands-on activity that you can try out with simple materials you have at home. Watch a short video clip to see how it’s done or download our 4-H Learn from Home activity sheets. Each activity outlines materials needed, easy to follow instructions, reflection questions for discussion and activity extensions.

Learn at Home: Educational Resources to Use During School Closures

With novel coronavirus closing schools across Maine for several weeks, the University of Maine Cooperative Extension has assembled this collection of helpful educational resources for parents and caregivers. From science to financial literacy, whether for toddlers or teenagers, we encourage you to take advantage of these activity books, guides, and other resources to help children remain engaged in educational experiences throughout their school closure. Find resources for every age group!

4-H “Learn at Home” BINGO

Looking for some fun family activities you can do from your own home? Maine 4-H invites you to play 4-H Learn at Home BINGO! Register online to receive your Bingo Board for the month of May.

New 4-H Citizen Scientists Club

We have an exciting opportunity for kids in 4th through 8th grade to join a new virtual 4-H club—the 4-H Citizen Scientists! In this club you’ll practice citizen science in your own back yard, and observe and report on the nature around you while making connections with fellow citizen scientists around the state! The club will meet Wednesdays starting May 13, 2020 through June 17. This club is limited to 10 members, and online registration is required. If there is enough interest, we may consider adding additional dates. We have some great resources to learn about different Citizen Science opportunities. Register online.

Application Deadline for National 4-H Conference and Congress Extended to May 22!

National 4-H Trips are excellent opportunities to meet 4-H members from across the nation. Participants learn about many career options, and learn through educational workshops at National 4-H Congress, or become a part of a team making recommendations to the National 4-H Council at Conference.

Any Maine 4-H Youth, ages 14 to 18, is eligible to apply. Applicants must be current Maine 4-H members both at the time of application and the time of the actual trip. This year based on the ongoing Covid 19 crisis and the shelter-in-home orders, we are extending the application deadline. (Thank you to all those who have already sent in applications, we have them on file.) Application packets must be sent to: State 4-H Office 491 College Avenue, Orono ME 04473 or emailed to by: May 22, 2020. They must be emailed by the end of the day, or postmarked by May 22, 2020. You will be called or emailed directly for a convenient interview date and time. Interviews most likely will be held via “Zoom” technology or something similar. This schedule applies to applicants who have already sent in their applications.

If you have any questions, please contact Heidi Palmer at 207.310.4235 (cell) or 2020 National 4-H Congress is still scheduled to take place on November 27-December 1, 2020 in Atlanta GA.  (The Congress trip orientation is scheduled for October 24, 2020) and 2021 National 4-H Conference is scheduled in Washington, D.C., April 10-15, 2021. (The 2021 Conference orientation will be Feb 13, 2021).

Camp Scholarships Available

The Maine 4-H Foundation has camp scholarships ranging from $100-$200 available for 4-H members to any one week of 4-H camp. Try one of our University of Maine 4-H Camp and Learning Centers at Blueberry Cove, Bryant Pond, Greenland Point and Tanglewood. Call the camps to ask for a scholarship. Scholarships are based on need and first-come, first-serve.

Virtual UMaine Webpage

If you’re interested in attending UMaine there is a dedicated web page for students to learn more information because Accepted Student Days and Open House Programs have been canceled for the spring. Check it out!