Wisconsin 4-H celebrates 100 years of growing Wisconsin leaders with 4-H Day at the Capitol

WI State Capitol

Wisconsin State Capitol, #5936, courtesy UW-Madison University Communications

Contact: Jackie Askins, 608-262-8083 or jackie.askins@ces.uwex.edu

Wisconsin 4-H Youth Development celebrates 100 years of positive youth development programming with several events in 2014. Since 1914, Wisconsin 4-H has helped youth grow the leadership, critical thinking and communications skills necessary to be successful in a constantly changing world.

To kick off the Centennial year, more than 800 4-H members and volunteers will come to Madison for 4-H Day at the Capitol on Wednesday, March 19. Members of the public are invited to visit 4-H Day at the Capitol to see staffed displays of 4-H programs and projects in the Rotunda from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. or celebrate 4-H with a rally at noon.

Wisconsin 4-H Youth Development is part of the University of Wisconsin-Extension, and 4-H programs are delivered in partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and federal, state and local governments. 4-H has its roots in youth corn clubs, which helped researchers at the UW-Extension share the latest agriculture developments with farmers by teaching their children.

Just seven youth attended the first 4-H club meeting in Walworth County on Oct. 30, 1914. Today, more than 35,000 youth are enrolled as community club members, and nearly 50,000 young people are involved in 4-H through in-school and after-school clubs, day camps, mentoring programs and other opportunities. All Wisconsin 4-H programs are supported by the hard work of more than 20,000 youth and adult volunteers.

Wisconsin 4-H programs continue to emphasize lifelong learning and a strong connection with the University of Wisconsin. Programs are available for all interests including science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), agriculture and animal science, arts and communications, leadership, healthy living, international exchange and more.

Wisconsin 4-H Youth Development will celebrate the Centennial with a few more statewide events throughout the year: April will be Wisconsin 4-H Statewide Service Month; and Aug. 5, 2014 is Wisconsin 4-H Day at the State Fair. County 4-H programs will celebrate the Wisconsin 4-H Centennial at local events throughout the year. Check out http://blogs.ces.uwex.edu/4hcentennial/ to learn more about the last 100 years of Wisconsin 4-H and find 4-H Centennial events in your area.

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Wisconsin 4-H Youth Development is a program of the University of Wisconsin-Extension, Cooperative Extension in partnership with state, federal and county government in each Wisconsin county.

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