I would like to thank all of the businesses who participated in the Rabbit Auction at the Benton County Fair!  THANK YOU for supporting 4-H!   As a parent, leader, and former 4-Her, I know how much work these kids pour into their projects, both in the static and the livestock projects.  The responsibilities learned through caring for livestock and the written and verbal communication required for the write-ups and record books are so valuable.  This amazing program teaches kids life skills that will help make them valuable employees in the future, perhaps for your business!

Kids in 4-H complete yearly presentations and/or working exhibits, and also perform community service projects.  In the world today, so much verbal communication is lost. One of the best things we can do for our youth is to support these precious skills.  These 4-Her’s are our future! They are entrepreneurs and employees.  The article in last week’s Vinton Today about Tess Lillibridge and the value she saw in her red angus cows and the path 4-H set her on is just one example of what is possible with 4-H!  I encourage you to read the article if you haven’t yet.  She is going to be a valuable employee someday!

Having been an actively involved 4-Her for over eight years, I didn’t realize how fortunate I was to have had speaking, socializing, communication and task management experiences until I attended college and saw others my age who had never spoken in front of a group before! They were struggling and I was experienced. This is one of the many ways this program is truly changing kids’ lives! I have repeatedly seen the value of the skills I learned in 4-H throughout my life and I know there are many former 4-Her’s who as parents want their children to have the incredible life experiences they did in the program. Thank you for making a difference in the lives of our children!

THANK YOU to the following businesses who have dedicated support to the 4-H Community and the future of Benton County!  Your Support IS appreciated!! Hills Bank, Coots Materials, Schulte & Railsback Farms, Cindy Briggs, Linn Co-op, Fareway, Hanson Pioneer, Interstate Grain, Parker & Tucker Siela, Garrett & Lauren Wittmer, Harold Knnack, Wilson-Hite Insurance, Triston Ingalls, Cornerstone Apothecary of Van Horne, and Security State Bank.

A special thank you to Greg & Jessica Clark, Justin & Cathy McNeill, and Kevin & Tressa Walton for sponsoring the ribbons and certificates for the Rabbit Auction. Thank you to all of those who volunteered at the Auction to help it run smoothly and especially Duane Johnson for auctioneering. Your contributions are recognized and greatly appreciated!

To all the supporters of the Benton County Fair and the Livestock/Ribbon Auction on Sunday- THANK YOU!!!  And to all the 4-Her’s who are learning valuable life lessons even if they might not fully realize the value today – keep up the good work!  Your leaders, parents, and community are very proud of you!

Tressa Walton, CISR, CPIA