While not a particularly large club, Mid Valley 4-H members are involved in many different projects. The club has several new members this year, and they, too, add different interests and more projects.
During its first meeting of the year in September, club members were determining just what and how many projects they could take on.
Ten-year-old Kelsey raised a steer project last year. She will again this year. Her family is in the cattle business.
“I love it,” she said of her project choice.
She “loved making it grow and making it friendly,” she said of her Angus-cross steer, Boomer.
She learned, she said, “how to have patience with him; how to set him up and walk him.”
She will soon be looking for another calf to raise for the coming year.
Jillian, age 9, joined Mid Valley last year. She participated in cupcake decorating and photography. This year she is the club’s Healthy Living officer, and club reporter.
She originally joined because, “My mom and dad had the idea first.” This year, “I wanted to do it again – to keep myself busy,” she said.
4-H was a way to get her out and to put her arts & crafts abilities out into the public eye, her father, Ramir Ramirez said.
While the family lives in Lemoore, they bring Jillian and now her brother, Brayden, age 5, to Kit Carson School in Hanford to attend meetings, because their mother, Jeri, knew the club leader, Cobi Revious.
Jillian hasn’t quite decided which projects she will do this year. Brayden will be involved in Beginning 4-H, and canning & baking.
Newbie Brady, 12, is in his first year with 4-H.
“We’re trying to find something he likes,” his mother said.
Brady has decided to participate in small engines and metal working projects.
“They sounded cool,” he said. “I like taking things apart and putting them back together.”
Twelve-year-old Lily is in her fourth year of 4-H and mostly participates in sewing and cooking.
She is vice president of Mid Valley this year, and has served as club president in the past. Her sewing entries in various contests have won her numerous awards, including a win in the California State Fair Wool Contest in Sacramento. She also participates in camping and woodworking.
Sewing is indeed her favorite.
“It’s fun, I like doing it,” she said. “The first year was a challenge.”
Sometimes she follows patterns, other times, she creates her own.
And, she enjoys picking out new fabric. Her great grandmother is the project leader, she said.
While she’s not quite sure while she’s sewing a project, “as soon as I am done, I like it,” she said.
Lily’s brother, Austin, age 9, is also involved, quite actively.
He participates in shooting, public speaking, swine, cake decorating, camping, photography, sewing, arts & crafts and electronics.
Club president, Courtney, 12, has also been involved for a few years. She served as vice president last year.
She raised a rabbit project last year and won Best in Show with her Flemish Giant Rabbit at the 2017 Kings County 4-H Fair.
Becoming a bit “bored” with rabbits, she said, she has signed up for a swine project this year.
She has arrangements to house her pig, which she will get next April. She is not particular of the breed, however, does not want a pink pig, because she doesn’t want it to burn in the sunlight, she said.
In order to be able to sell her project at the fair, she must also participate in showmanship, so she intends to do that as well, she said. Courtney is also involved in camping, her father is the project leader; and cake decorating.
Her favorite cake creation, so far, was one that looked like a watermelon with frosted flowers, she said.
As for camping, it just may be the most fun.
“I like camping the most because you get to go hang out with your friends,” she said.
The camping project has taken them quite a few places including the mountains and the beach.
“4-H has helped me with self-assurance,” Courtney said. “I was really shy in early grades – I used to sit by myself.”
Self-assured, Courtney conducted the half-hour first meeting of the year, welcoming new members and conducting club business. The meeting was adjourned with a focus on the new year and new projects ahead.