4-H News in Washington County – March 2023

Dates to Remember

March 4: Washington County 4-H Public Speaking Tournament
March 5: Snow Date-Washington County 4-H Public Speaking Tournament
March 6 & 10: Building Background on Vernal Pools Adult Training
March 7-April 11: Algae SPIN Club
March 7-April 18: Maine 4-H Ag Ambassador Program
March 9-12: National 4-H Youth Summit, Washington D.C.
March 23: 4-H Page Day in Augusta
March 28 & April 4: Start Your 4-H Volunteer Journey Training
April 1: ESE Sheep Team Intent Forms Due
April 8: State 4-H Public Speaking Tournament, Orono
April 19 & 26: Start Your 4-H Volunteer Journey Training
April 20-21: Maine 4-H Ag Symposium, Orono
June 24 – 30: Citizenship Washington Focus
July 21-22:
Maine 4-H Days, Windsor Fairgrounds


Washington County 4-H Public Speaking Tournament

youth public speakingWe are looking forward to the Washington County 4-H Public Speaking tournament on Saturday, March 4th at 10 a.m. in Science 102 on the campus of the University of Maine at Machias.

As of right now we still plan on hosting the event on Saturday as minimal snow is in the forecast. Please check the Washington County 4-H Facebook page or our website on Friday evening for updates.  We will post if we plan to move the tournament to our snow date on Sunday, March 5th.

Best wishes to all our participants!


4-H Camp and Learning Centers Scholarships Available

We are currently accepting requests for scholarships to attend camp at one of the 4-H Camp and Learning Centers in Maine. Youth must currently be enrolled in the Washington County 4-H Program and registered for camp. Please complete the request form at this website: https://extension.umaine.edu/washington/washington-county-4-h-camp-scholarship/.  Request deadline is June 16, 2023.  A limited number of scholarships are available and are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

UMaine 4-H Camp and Learning Center at Greenland Point


4-H at Winter Family Fun Day

4-H Professional, Gabrielle Brodek, was on hand at the Winter Family Fun Day at Middle River Park on February 25. This event was hosted by the Downeast Coastal Conservancy.  Gabby spoke with attendees and shared ways to become involved in 4-H!

4-H Professional at Winter Family Fun Day at Middle River Park


Animal Approval Forms

Don’t forget to submit your animal approval forms to your county office. These forms must be submitted by the deadline for your commodity to participate in 4-H shows or other events this summer.
If you think you might be interested in going to the Big E this fall, put in your animal approval form by the deadline!  

  • ESE horse date: 4/1/2023
  • ESE Dairy date: 5/1/2023
  • Working Steer: 5/1/2023
  • Market Lambs: 6/1/2023 All other sheep classes 6/30/2023
  • All other commodities 6/30/2023

Forms can be found at this website.


Start Your 4-H Volunteer  Journey Trainings

University of Maine Cooperative Extension will offer a two-part online training for adults interested in becoming 4-H volunteers from 12-1 p.m. on March 28 and April 4, 2023 and again from 6-7 p.m. on April 19 and 26, 2023.  Please share with adults who may be interested in becoming a 4-H volunteer.

Start Your 4-H Volunteer Journey” will explore the ways volunteers can become involved with UMaine Extension 4-H, what the 4-H youth development program is about and requirements for becoming a volunteer. Participants will also hear from youth and volunteers currently active in Extension 4-H and do a hands-on activity together.

The training is free; registration is required. Register on the event webpage. For more information or to request a reasonable accommodation, contact Jennifer Lobley, 207.255.3345; jennifer.lobley@maine.edu.


News from the State

New Project Records are HERE!
Co-designed with Maine 4-H volunteers, youth and staff; these project records have been designed to best serve the needs of Maine youth. Please visit our newly designed project record website https://extension.umaine.edu/4h/volunteers/project-records/. Project records are required for all Maine 4-H Youth. Stay tuned for upcoming trainings. Please contact your county 4-H staff with questions.

Building Background on Vernal Pools
Although spring may seem like a lifetime away, it is just around the corner! This means that vernal pools will be full of life soon. Join fellow practitioners to learn about content and activities around vernal pools! Gabby Brodek, Washington County 4-H Youth Development Professional, and Dr. Rachel Wolf, a learning science researcher at Stanford University, are facilitating a 90 minute virtual session for adults where you will build background knowledge, discuss connections to climate science, and explore example activities to support youth learning around vernal pools.

Sessions will be held on Monday, March 6th 3:30-5pm and Friday, March 10th 11-12:30pm, EST. Each session will review the same material. Click here to register [https://www.gmri.org/events/building-background-on-vernal-pools/] for the event.

This information session is a component of the Gulf of Maine Research Institute’s Spring Learning Theme: Vernal Pools, a product of Learning Ecosystems Northeast (LENE), a NASA funded collaborative focused on building partnerships and pathways that provide youth with opportunities to engage in locally relevant learning experiences around climate and data science.

Citizenship Washington Focus (CWF)
Start making plans now to visit our Nation’s Capitol during the week of June 24 – 30, 2023. CWF is a leadership program conducted by the National 4-H Council for high school youth ages 14 to 18. Delegations of 4-Hers from across the country spend six days touring the city and attending leadership skill-building workshops. This summer, the Maine delegation will travel down on June 24 and travel home June 30. Youth will be staying in a hotel just outside of the DC limits. Visiting the most popular sites in Washington, DC will be a part of the trip. There is a mandatory orientation for Maine delegates on April 29, 2023.  For more information visit https://extension.umaine.edu/4h/annual-events/citizenship-washington-focus/. Contact your county 4-H office for details about how to be a part of this. All county offices have different criteria/dates to apply.

Apply Now for National 4-H Trips
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 Congress or become a part of a team making recommendations to National 4-H Council at Conference. To learn more about these trips, visit: https://extension.umaine.edu/4h/national-trips/.

New for 2023: Complete and submit your application [https://extension.umaine.edu/4h/national-trips/national-trips-application/] and supplemental materials online!

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. Application packets must be submitted online, or sent to your county office and postmarked by April 25, 2023. Interview dates will be the second week of May, 2023. If you have any questions, please contact Heidi Palmer at 207.310.4235 or heidi.thuotte@maine.edu.

2023 National 4-H Congress is November 24 – 30, 2023 in Atlanta GA with an orientation for the trip on October 21, 2023.  2024  National 4-H Conference has not yet been announced, but will likely take place in April of 2024 in Washington, DC., orientation for that trip will be announced to those selected.  Leaders and office staff, if you have senior members in your clubs, please encourage them to participate.  They are amazing trips!

State Public Speaking Tournament – Save the Date!
Our state public speaking tournament will be held on April 8, 2023 at DP Corbett Hall on the University of Maine campus. Youth must qualify for this event by achieving a score of 78 or higher at their county or regional tournament. Check the website [https://extension.umaine.edu/4h/public-speaking/tournament/] or with your county 4-H staff to find out when your county tournament will be held. 

2023 4-H Volunteer Training Opportunities
As we get ready for the new 4-H year, we are looking forward to offering a variety of learning experiences (both in person and virtual) for our 4-H volunteers. Sessions are free of charge, but require registration. Some sessions have limited space. Visit the 4-H Volunteer Calendar of Training Opportunities to learn more and register! 

Save the Date for 4-H Dairy Judging and State Show!
The Maine 4-H Dairy Judging Contest will take place on May 6th, 2023 at Hardy Farm in Farmington, ME and Silver Valley Farm in New Sharon, ME. The contest is open to all enrolled dairy members and will serve as the official tryouts for the Maine 4-H Dairy Judging Team.

The Maine State 4-H Dairy Show will take place on July 22nd and 23rd at the Windsor Fairgrounds in Windsor, ME. The contest is open to all 4-H members who want to participate and will include educational workshops, a fitting contest, a grilled cheese contest, and more!

For more information on upcoming 4-H dairy events visit umaine.edu/4h/dairy or contact sadee.mehuren@maine.edu; 207.342.5971

Maine 4-H Days: Save the Date! July 21 – 22, 2023
We’re back for fun times, workshops, overnight camping and more at the Windsor Fairgrounds in Kennebec County! More information to come, so save the dates! 

Maine 4-H Ag Ambassador and Ag Symposium- Teens sign up now!
For teens that are 13-18 years old, we invite you to join us for our Ag Ambassador program this spring! This will be an opportunity to connect with other teens from around the state to explore and share your interests in the Maine food system, agriculture, climate change, environmental justice, and where all these interests collide. The spring 2023 cohort will meet from 3:30-5:00pm on Tuesday afternoons from March 7 to April 18 on zoom with an in-person celebratory luncheon in Orono for families on April 20. The luncheon will kick off our overnight Teen Ag Symposium at the UMaine Orono campus on April 20 and April 21. This will be a hands-on exploration of many aspects of the Maine food system and the research and education happening at the University.

Additional details about the program and registration can be found on the event website [https://extension.umaine.edu/4h/youth/ag-leadership/registration-agricultural-leadership-ambassador-program/]. For more information or to request reasonable accommodation, contact Sadee Mehuren; 207.342.5971; 4hagleadership@maine.edu.

4-H Page Day in Augusta – March 23, 2023 – Sign Up Now!
Date: March 23, 2023
Where: Augusta, Maine State Legislature & First Amendment Museum
Time: 8:30 am – 3:30 pm
Deadline: First come, first serve, March 3, 2023

UMaine Day at the Legislature, Thursday, March 23, is approaching.  It’s a day where Cooperative Extension gets to highlight our awesome programs, and 4-H is one of the best! It’s also a time for youth to get actively involved in their democracy, to see how and who makes decisions that impact our state, and to be involved in that process themselves. 4-Hers age 13 or older are encouraged to serve as Honorary Pages. The Maine 4-H program has up to 22 slots for Honorary Pages and registration is first come, first serve with a deadline of March 3.

What does a page do? Legislators are constantly communicating and making decisions while in session and pages make that communication possible. Pages hand out information packets or place the paper information on their desks. Pages will also run communication and documents directly from legislator to legislator. It’s fast paced and pages will be moving around the chambers quite a bit, taking direction from the Clerks. We will meet at 8:30 for pictures and an orientation. Then at 9:00am we will divide our group with one going to the House and the other to the Senate where each group will receive their instructions. Session will begin by 10:00am and will likely conclude around 12:30pm, but the timing is never certain. Lunch will be on your own.

NEW: First Amendment Museum- Supreme Court in Action! The Museum will host our group from 1:30-3:30pm with a free interactive learning series that places each of us into different roles within the U.S. Supreme Court. You will get real life court cases to argue for or against, to make a ruling, and to report on, to get an in depth look at what happens when free speech, the courts, and citizens come together. Democracy can be messy, so let’s dig in!

If you are interested in serving as a page, please register via the online form. I f you have questions or would like to request an accommodation please do so by March 3 to Alisha Targonski at alisha.r.targonski@maine.edu. Thank you!

ESE Sheep Team Intent Form
The 2023 Maine 4-H ESE Sheep Team intent to participate form is now available online at https://extension.umaine.edu/4h/sheep/. If you are interested in participating in the team, the form must be submitted to Sadee Mehuren at sadee.mehuren@maine.eduor mailed to the Waldo County Cooperative Extension office by April 1, 2023. At ESE the team, along with teams from other New England states, show their sheep and participate in a sheep blocking contest. Together the team prepares an educational display and participates and competes in knowledge contests against teams from other states.To be eligible you must have participated in a 4-H sheep project for at least one year and be at least 12 years old as of December 31, 2022.

Please contact Sadee Mehuren at sadee.mehuren@maine.edu or 207.342.5971 for more information.