December 30, 2015 - 3:11pm --

It’s 4-H project season, once again.

Returning 4-H youth and volunteers, or anyone interested in joining the program, can get a head start on the new year by taking part in the first-ever Winter Project Fair, which is set for 3-6 p.m. January 11 at the Jackson County OSU Extension Office.

New projects will be debuted at the event, in addition to samples of most project books for 2016 being made available. 4-H Extension Educator and Jackson County Director Erin Dailey says this is an ideal opportunity to learn about new and different projects, order your books and get a start on the year.

“Often times, youth will not start thinking about their 4-H project until summer comes, this will allow them and hopefully  encourage them to get a head start,” said Dailey.

“There are more than 200 projects available, everything from laundry to robotics. There is really something for everyone. At the Winter Project Fair, youth will have the chance to learn more about a topic they are interested in, or find new subjects to explore.”

There will be stations set up that will be committed to different categories of projects including: Animal Sciences, Child and Family Development, Clothing and Textile Science, Communication, Creative and Leisure Arts, Food and Nutrition, Healthy Living, Home Living, Leadership and Citizenship, Money Management, Natural Resources, STEM, Self-Determined, and Workforce Preparation.

In addition to serving returning members, the Winter Project Fair is also aimed at any local youth or prospective adult volunteers who are interested in joining the Jackson County 4-H Youth Development Program. Extension staff and 4-H volunteers will be on hand to answer your questions, furnish you with informational materials about the program, or even help you sign up that day.

Ohio 4-H membership is based on a child’s age AND grade. Cloverbud eligibility begins when a child is enrolled in Kindergarten and is five years old as of January 1 of the current year. Cloverbud participation ends when a child is eligible for competitive events, 4-H projects and other older youth activities — which is age eight and in the third grade as of January 1 of the current year.  A 4-H member’s last year of eligibility is the year in which they are 18 as of January 1.

This past year, Jackson County 4-H involved 654 members through 36 community clubs. Through these experiences, youth learned leadership, citizenship and life skills, as well as specific subject matter knowledge through more than 200 different 4-H projects. Overall, the Jackson County 4-H program reached nearly 4,500 youth through school, club and community programs over the past year.

In the event of inclement weather, which forces school closures, a make-up date has been scheduled for January 18. Check the OSU Extension website and Facebook page for weather-related cancellation updates.

To learn more about the 4-H program, or any of the services offered through Jackson County OSU Extension, visit


Bradford Sherman