2020 is full of 4-H opportunities for youth

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 10, 2020

By Laura Allen

Rowan County 4-H Agent

Happy New Year! 4-H enrollment begins annually in January of each year, so now is a great time to join Rowan County 4-H.

4-H offers a broad range of opportunities for youth ages 5-18 (as of Jan. 1). Through 4-H, youth explore their interests and participate in leadership and citizenship development opportunities offered at the local, district, state and/or national levels. 4-H provides a positive environment for youth to learn by doing, while having guidance from adult mentors.

There are lots of 4-H events coming up soon that will be great opportunities for the youth in your life. I challenge you to find a way to get involved with 4-H in 2020.


The Speak-Up workshop series focuses on developing public speaking skills in youth. There are four workshops: Jan. 27, Feb. 3, 10 and 17. Session 1 is for youth ages 7-11 as of Jan. 1 and is from 4:30-5:45 p.m. Session 2 is for youth ages 12-18 as of Jan. 1 and is from 6-7:15 p.m.. Total cost is $40 per child (covers all four workshops).

Participants must pre-register by Jan. 17. A limit of 10 youth per session. Workshop leader is Cheryl Kane of Barton & Kane Consolidated who has years of experience with public speaking and leadership development. Workshops are held at Rowan County Cooperative Extension.


This school enrichment program is open to second-grade and seventh-grade classrooms within public, private and charter schools in Rowan County, as well as home-school families.

Teachers will be trained and provided with an incubator, fertilized eggs and curriculum/materials to allow their students to have a hands-on opportunity to learn about the life cycle of chicks. Those who participate will have to supply a tote/box to use as a brooder box, shavings and heat lamp. The cost is $10 per classroom. Supplies are limited to 30 participants per cycle listed below. Pre-registration is required. Those interested can register by emailing laura_allen@ncsu.edu. The embryology cycles offered this year are:

• Private/Charter/Home-School Cycle: Feb. 4 at 3:30 p.m. (training and pick up); Feb. 28 (return chicks and materials by 4:30 p.m.); must pre-register by Jan. 17.

• Public School Cycle 1: March 3 at 3:30 p.m. (training and pick up); March 27 (return chicks and materials by 4:30 p.m.); must pre-register by Feb. 7.

Public School Cycle 2: April 14 at 3:30 p.m. (training and pick up); May 8 (return chicks and materials by 4:30 p.m.); must pre-register by Feb. 7.

4-H Clubs

Rowan County has nine 4-H clubs. We have two clubs that focus on a variety of topics. The additional clubs have more focused topics and include a cooking club, a livestock club and a plant/nature homeschool club, two horse clubs and two shooting sports clubs.

These clubs are made up of at least one approved adult volunteer and youth who join the club. The clubs allow youth to learn how to run a business meeting and provide additional educational opportunities for youth. Youth in these clubs are involved in the total 4-H program and participate in 4-H achievement plans, project record books, presentations and other opportunities and competitions offered through 4-H.

Clubs meet at least once per month. Any youth ages 5-18 as of Jan. 1 can join and new adult volunteers are welcome, too. There is also the opportunity to start a new 4-H club, if you desire. 

4-H Camp

Rowan County 4-H will be attending 4-H Camp at Betsy-Jeff Penn 4-H Educational Center in Reidsville June 28-July 3. The camping facility offers lots of opportunities for youth to learn new skills and make new friends. Activities include high ropes courses, rock climbing, arts and crafts, cooking, horses, archery, nature exploration, campfires, canoeing, swimming, team building and more.

4-H Camp is accredited through the American Camp Association. Total cost for youth is $420. Any Rowan County youth can attend, regardless if they are in 4-H. Active Rowan County 4-H’ers are offered a discounted price. Scholarship opportunities may be available.

We are also seeking any donations from local citizens or companies to help offset costs for youths who need financial assistance. To attend, a $150 non-refundable deposit and registration form are due to Rowan County 4-H by March 25. The remaining balance is due by June 2. 


4-H provides competitions in the following areas: presentations, project record books, expressive arts, photography, horse shows, dairy/poultry/livestock/horse judging and quiz bowl, shooting sports and more. Youth have many opportunities to learn and practice their skills.

If you/your children are interested in any of these opportunities, please email 4-H Agent Laura Allen at laura_allen@ncsu.edu or call 704-216-8970. You can also check out the most recent Rowan County 4-H newsletter at https://rowan.ces.ncsu.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/9/2020/01/January-4-H-Newsletter.pdf?fwd=no

Rowan County Cooperative Extension is located at 2727-A Old Concord Road Salisbury, NC 28146.