In spite of the challenges 2020 presented, the Delaware County 4-H community pushed through to help members learn, while clubs continued to have an impact in local communities.
On Jan. 26, the Delaware County 4-H Committee held its 79th annual Volunteer and Member Recognition Event virtually to highlight the impact and success that 4-H members, clubs, and leaders had in 2020.
The members who were recognized completed a county achievement form to highlight excellent project area accomplishments, community service initiatives, and leadership in their clubs and community. The members honored are as follows, along with their project areas:
• Makenzie Levings, a member of the Scioto Dog 4-H Club, earned the Companion Animals Award. Over the last five years, Levings has taken obedience, rally, showmanship, agility, assistance dogs and PetPals. This year, she trained a new family puppy. Levings has been a member of the dog bowl team for four years. At fair this year, she won first place in Senior You & Your Dog, Novice A Dog Obedience, and Intermediate B Dog Rally; and she placed second in Senior Dog Showmanship and Senior Dog Skillathon.
Levings also received the Rabbit Achievement Award. She raised Holland lops and Californian rabbits this year, showing them in breeding classes this year at the fair. She also raised meat rabbits for the Pen of Two Roaster class. Levings received Best of Breed for her senior doe Holland lop and placed first in the Senior Rabbit Skillathon.
• Shannon Barr, a member of the Berlin 4-H’ers 4-H Club, earned the Gardening and Horticulture Award. Barr completed flower and vegetable projects this year, planting and caring for annuals, perennials, bulbs, containers, and many vegetables. This year she explored using vegetable containers due to mobility issues this spring. She helped plant 1,200 onions for the Garden of Hope for cancer patients. She won Best Flower Specimen with a large dalia and Best Garden Display awards at the fair.
• Allison Riley, a member of the Going 4 Gold 4-H Club, earned the Health and Safety Award. Riley is a member of the Ohio Health Heroes and attended the National 4-H Youth Summit on Healthy Living in February. Her demonstration for the club was on sodium in foods and how to lower sodium intake. This year, she was on a four-member team of teens that were semifinalists in the Ohio Youth Capital for their public policy plan regarding evaluating Morrow County Road conditions.
• Logan Lucas, a member of the Critter Run 4-H Club, earned the Llama and Alpaca Award. After leasing an alpaca last year, Lucas became hooked. He now owns and raised two for his project this year. He learned about giving shots, and he practiced with several obstacles all summer. He gave a demonstration on how to take an alpaca through an obstacle course. He also helped his dad build some of the obstacles. He placed in several classes at the fair and received first place in Alpaca Intermediate Skillathon.
• Jayden Lucas, a member of the Critter Run 4-H Club, earned the Swine Award. Lucas learned how to train hogs to keep their heads up when showing. He also watched a video on ear notching to learn more about this ID method. This year, Lucas helped a new member in his club and helped him weigh his hogs three times over the summer.
The county also recognizes Secretary and Treasurer Club Officers to demonstrate competence and excellence as leaders in their clubs. The award winner for the Secretary Book Award is Makenzie Levings, with an honorable mention for Isabelle Cook of Elm Valley 4-Her’s 4-H Club. The Treasurer Book Award was earned by Michael Riley of the Going 4 Gold 4-H Club.
Other top member awards are the Susan Bargar Horse Achievement Award, Ashley Jr. Fair Award, and the Cunningham Leadership Award.
Lauren Thiergartner, a member of the Just Lopin’ Around 4-H Club, received the Susan Bargar Horse Achievement Award.
Thiergartner is a 10-year member of 4-H and has been a member of JJ’s E-Z Riders, Sunbury Halter and Saddle, and most recently, Just Lopin’ Around. She is an accomplished and versatile rider and has won top awards in English and Western classes. However, the advisors nominating her for the award didn’t remark as much on her success in the ring, but in those she helps. One noted “her willingness to put herself aside and help newer or younger exhibitors. She came to ride outs without her horse and helped the kids understand the pieces and parts of pattern work.” Thiergartner truly embodies the spirit of this award.
Mackenzie Sapp, a member of the Powell Sew and Sows 4-H Club, is the recipient of the Ashley Jr. Fair Award, which is given by the Delaware County Fair in honor of the Ashley Junior Fair and its history of being the first junior fair in the nation in 1923. In 1972, the Ashley Fair ended, and the money left after closing all accounts was used to start a cash award given annually to outstanding Delaware County Jr. Fair exhibitors.
Sapp’s projects over the years have included ducks, rabbits, dogs, sheep and cake decorating. This year, she earned top honors with the Your Thoughts Matter project, and she received an outstanding in cake decorating. With her animal projects this year, she received Champion and Reserve Champion awards with her production meat ducks, and she was the showed the Champion Wool Breed Ram and the Reserve Supreme Champion Ram. She also won the Best Pet Rabbit award at this year’s fair.
The Cunningham Leadership Award is given in memory of Paul Cunningham, who was an OSU Extension agent in Delaware County from 1940 to 1964. In 1965, after his death, a memorial fund was established to annually recognize two outstanding 4-H, FFA and FCCLA youth leaders. This year’s awards were earned by Ellen Riley and Rachel Sherman.
Ellen Riley is a member of Going 4 Gold 4-H Club. Her leadership extends across 4-H, her school, and the community. Through 4-H, she has held several club offices and is a member of the Ohio 4-H Health Heroes, a teen group focused on health advocacy. In this role, she has attended the National Youth Summit on Healthy Living the past three years. At Buckeye Valley, she is treasurer of the Science Club, is on Student Council and is a member of the National Honor Society. She is on the Ohio Attorney General Teen Leadership Board in which she completes service activities and provides a teen perspective through conferences with employees in the attorney general’s office.
Rachel Sherman is a member of Eagle Country 4-H Club and Big Walnut FFA. Sherman’s leadership is strong in both organizations. She has been the FFA student advisor for three years and helps make decisions for the future of the program. She received the State FFA degree in 2019 and was the National FFA Dairy Production Entrepreneurship Proficiency winner. She is secretary of Eagle County 4-H Club, which is Delaware County’s largest 4-H club with over 75 members. She complies documents for meetings and managed communication for the club. To promote the agricultural industry, she has taught kindergarteners about how milk is made and taught fourth graders about food science through making a cake.
The Delaware County 4-H Committee also recognized clubs who held eight or more meetings (most being held virtually), demonstrated an impact in the local community, found fun ways to engage with the members in the club, and create an educational environment. The clubs receiving this award are:
• Ashley Jr. Farmers made 27 blankets to give to Nationwide Children’s Hospital when they heard about an urgent need. Since they could not do the blankets as a group, each family made them at home and then coordinated delivery. The club also donated to a Kilbourne Food Bank.
• Berlin 4-H’ers conducted many COVID-friendly service projects throughout the year. They conducted a coat drive, made masks, and sent letters to two senior centers. Some of the seniors wrote back and became pen pals.
• Brown Bakers & Rakers collected food for the Buckeye Valley Food Pantry during the summer when the food pantry experienced an increase in need.
• Critter Run worked with Preservation Parks to plant trees at a new park off Pollock Road. They contacted Russell Tree Services to provide the trees and shovels, and planted 250 black walnut trees.
• Eagle Country 4-H Club also made no-sew blankets for Nationwide Children’s Hospital, wrote letters to those in nursing homes, and donated canned goods. They also created a video, with members independently filming about what 4-H means to them. The video was shared at a local elementary school for a viral end of school year activity.
• Going 4 Gold wrote letters to nursing home residents, cleaned flower gardens at the Fairgrounds the week prior to fair, and painted a rain barrel for an environmental festival to be auctioned off.
• Hams & Udders conducted a river bed clean up and picked up trash, gave cookies to elderly, delivered coffee and donuts to a police department, and helped several elderly in their area with yard work.
• Set 4 Success collected 65 pounds of canned goods in one month for donation to a local food pantry. They also put together 14 boxes of toiletries and toys for Operation Shoebox.
• Won by One initiated a note-writing campaign and sent 54 cards to encourage first responders, doctors, nurses, those in nursing homes and friends. They collected clothes, toys, and groceries for those in need.
The Delaware County 4-H Committee also recognized volunteers for their service.
Volunteers hitting their five-year increment milestone in 2020 were Daniel Bishop, Jill Bishop, Mary Jo Cherup, Michelle Cook, Savannah Inscho-Lewis, Shannon Johnson, Melissa Matlack, Tiffany McComas, Pam Rice, Connie Skinner, David Toomey and Ellen Welker.
Honored for 10 years of service were Heather Hennell, Danielle Huffman, Philip Myers, Lawrence Reed, Molly Sestili, Fawn Ward and Christopher Welker.
Competing their 15th year of volunteer service were Michelle Dresdow, Nancy Hayes-Plazolles, Heather Manring, Carla Moore and Kelly VanGundy.
Recognized for 20 years of service were Patricia Bale, Bret Dennis, Earl Lehner and Ann Rammelsberg.
Honored for 25 years of volunteer service were Joyce Downerd, Rodney Harp, Michele Harris and Terri Huffman.
Completing their 35th year of volunteer service were, Betty Bostwick, Sue Wilcox and Barbara Wolfe.
To view the virtual Volunteer and Member Recognition Event, visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bUQ1E9hJNGE. To inquire about joining 4-H, call the Delaware County OSU Extension Office at 740-833-2030 or check out the county’s website at http://delaware.osu.edu.
Submitted by the Delaware County 4-H Committee.