Holmes County celebrates 4-H clubs


WALNUT CREEK, Ohio — The 2008 Holmes County 4-H Volunteer Recognition Banquet, Life is a highway: Make every mile a memory, marked the end of the 4-H year and miles of memories for members and volunteers alike.


At the banquet, Eric Shaver received the 2008 Friend of 4-H award. Shaver owns the East Holmes Veterinary Clinic and has been the Holmes County Fair veterinarian for the past 21 years.

Shaver believes 4-H is an important youth organization, as it teaches young people discipline and pride in completing their projects to the best of their ability.

He is adamant that 4-H is not about winning, but what is learned from the project and the fun involved in 4-H.


Bill and Bev Wachtel, recipients of the 2008 4-H Alumni Award have created miles of memories for hundreds of 4-H members during their tenure with the Nashville Jolly Farmers 4-H Club.

Bill began his 4-H career as a member of the Nashville Jolly Farmers 4-H club. During his 10 years as a 4-H member, Bill took many dairy cattle projects. Bev carried sewing projects as a member of a Millersburg 4-H club.

Bill and Bev became 4-H advisers of the Nashville Jolly Farmers 4-H club in 1963 and have seen their children and grandchildren among the members of their club.


Killbuck Savings Bank, recipient of the 2008 Partner in 4-H award, has been sponsoring the 4-H project books in Holmes County since 1989. Over the past 20 years, the bank has donated close $50,000 to cover the costs of the project books for the members.

Youth awards

Tanner Mast was selected to receive the 2008 Holmes County 4-H Club Treasurer Award. Tanner is the son of Jon and Leslee Mast and is a six-year member of the Buckeye 4-H club. He has taken rabbits, photography and creative arts projects.

This year, he represented Holmes County at the Ohio State Fair with his photography and creative arts projects.

Jenna Sterzbach was selected to receive the 2008 Holmes County 4-H Club Secretary Award. Jenna is the daughter of Don and Penni Stertzbach and a member of the Classy Critters 4-H Club.

She has been involved in 4-H for seven years and has taken a market hog project for the past four years.

Honor Clubs

Recognized as the 2008 Honor Clubs were:

Amazing Graze, Green Acres, Big Sky, Holmes County 4-H Shooting Sports, Buckeye, Killbuck Handy Helpers, Classy Critters, Nashville Jolly Farmers, Carteens 4-H Club, Variegated Clovers, Doughty Valley, and Westside Barnbusters.

As part of their application for Honor Club status, each club is asked to highlight its activities in the areas of significance to the 4-H symbol: head, heart, hands, health and clover.

Winners in each category were:

Head — Doughty Valley 4-H club

Heart — Holmes County Shooting Sports 4-H club

Hands — Big Sky 4-H club

Health — Variegated Clovers 4-H club

Clover — Classy Critters 4-H club

Odds and ends

The Holmes County Fair had record attendance this year with 34,678 people through the gates. That total is up almost 1,000 people over last year.

There were 934 projects displayed from 201 individuals and groups. There were 426 market animals exhibited and 307 non market animals exhibited.

In late September, Holmes County received a $200,000 grant to assist in relocating the fair grounds out of the flood plain. The county is required to put up an additional $200,000 to begin the relocation process.

As part of the mitigation process, the fair board is required to remove the three buildings that are most prone to flooding. This step must be completed by July 31, 2011, or the grant will be voided.


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Freelance writer Susan Mykrantz has been writing for Farm and Dairy since 1989. She is a graduate of the ag college at Ohio State University and also serves as editor of the "Ohio Jersey News." She lives in Wayne County.



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