RIO GRANDE — The Gallia County 4-H Advisors Association recently held its 75th annual volunteer recognition banquet at the Buckeye Hills Career Center.
The theme for this year’s banquet was “4-H builds leaders.” Throughout the evening, many awards were presented including the 2016 4-H Clover Award.
The 4-H Clover Award was initiated in 1988 to recognize the significant efforts and contributions to the Gallia County 4-H program. This year the award was presented to Farm Credit Mid-America for their support of the 4-H Camping program. Over the last four years, Farm Credit Mid-America has given over $65,000 for facility improvement at the Canter’s Cave 4-H Camp. In 2012, they funded a $25,000 grant which provided new roofs, updated electrical boxes and metal doors, on five of the boy’s cabins and the male staff cabin.
This year, Farm Credit Mid-America provided the Canter’s Cave 4-H Camp with a fund raising challenge, matching dollar for dollar up to $40,000 dollars to fund a new roof on the main lodge and two summer residential cabins. As a result of this challenge, Canter’s Cave 4-H camp was able to raise over $98,000 for the much needed roof projects. As a founding owner in the Canter’s Cave 4-H camp, Gallia County 4-H was honored to add Farm Credit Mid-America to its list of Clover Award winners. Accepting the award was Heather Simpkins, senior special accounts loan officer, Emily Tussey, county home loan officer, and Jake Bodimer, financial officer.
Also given out were the 2016 4-H Hall of Fame Awards. The 4-H Hall of Fame Award is presented each year to a candidate or candidates who have dedicated their lives to helping the 4-H Youth and the citizens of Gallia County. The 2016 winners included Brenda Sanders, Gary Fellure and the Clary Family (Ed Clary, Eric Clary, Beth Wamsley, Elijah Smith and Jari Clary Cain).
Brenda Sanders has been a 4-H volunteer for the past 36 years. She started as an advisor for the Hayseeds 4-H Club in 1981, where she has remained a 4-H volunteer. The Hayseeds 4-H club currently has 28 members which have been successful in their projects over the years and much of this success is due to the leadership of their club advisors. This year the club participated in many community service projects and assisted with various county 4-H events including: Cloverbud Day camp, the 4-H Activity Building, and the Canter’s Cave 4-H Fund Raiser and open house.
Gary Fellure got his start in 4-H as a member of the Thivener Pioneer 4-H club under advisors Wayne and Jane Jividen. He showed projects in both 4-H and FFA growing up which is where he developed a love for the Gallia County Fair. As an adult, he joined the Gallia County Junior Fair Board and served as a member from 1984 to 1995, holding the office of president from 1990 to 1991. While on the fair board, he also served on a number of committees to help grow the fair program including serving as the program and entertainment chairman. Gary now resides in Franklin County but he is still involved with the Gallia County Junior Fair, spending a week of his vacation as a fair volunteer. Recently, Gary was elected to serve on the Franklin County Fair Board where he will continue to influence the lives of young people in 4-H.
The Clary family has been involved in conservation education for many years. As members of the Gallia County Conservation Club, they have been a constant partnered with 4-H in the environmental education programming provided fishing, archery, hunting, and trapping educational programs to Gallia County 4-H members and children who camp at Canter’s Cave 4-H camp. Over the last two years, the Clary family has helped supply new fishing poles to over 340 4-H members who participated in the camping program. They have spent much time with local 4-H’ers at Cloverbud day camp, beginner camp and junior high camp providing environmental educational programs. Their education efforts extend into hunter safety classes, clinics and other community events including: 4-H project clinics, the 4-H Halloween Spooktacular, and the Farm City Day. The Clary family and the Gallia County Conservation club have been staunch supporters of 4-H for many years. They have donated gift baskets for 4-H fund raisers, donated to the Canter’s Cave Raise the Roof project and been involved in judging the 4-H conservation projects at the fair and sponsoring the Conservation Booths Awards.
The evening concluded with additional awards given to 4-H members and clubs, including the 2016 Teen Leadership Award, which is given to the top five teens who have volunteered the most hours providing leadership activities for county 4-H programs. These winners included Chloe Gee, of the RV All Stars 4-H Club, Ahnika Frogale, of the Saddles-N-Spurs 4-H Club, Caitlin Caldwell, of the Saddles-N-Spurs 4-H Club, Candance McNeal, of the Saddles-N-Spurs 4-H Club, and Josh Winters, of the For His Glory 4-H Club.
Also presented were the 4-H honor club awards. Earning gold club honors: Aftershock 4-H Club, Country to the Core 4-H Club, Eno Sail On 4-H Club, For His Glory 4-H Club, Gallia County Dairy Club, Good Times 4-H Club, K-9 Korps 4-H Club, and Triangle 4-H Club.
Earning Silver club honors: Raccoon Valley 4-H Club , Sundance Kids 4-H Club, and X-Treme Dreams 4-H Club. Earning Green club honors: Gallia Buccaneers 4-H Club, Gallia County Livestock Club, Hope’s Helping Hands 4-H Club, Keepin’ It Country 4-H Club, New Horizon 4-H Club, Pairs & Spares 4-H Club, Rio Hopefuls 4-H Club, Saddles N Spurs 4-H Club, Thivener Pioneers 4-H Club, and Whiz Kids 4-H Club.
The Ohio State University Extension 4-H Educator and County Director Tracy Winters, congratulated all of the 4-H Volunteers on “another great 4-H year.”
For information on how you can become a 4-H Volunteer or enroll your child in a club for the 2017 4-H season, please contact the Gallia County Extension Office at 740-446-7007.
Tracy Winters is a The Ohio State University Extension 4-H Educator, County Director