Attend Centennial Celebration this weekend

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By Roberta Hunt

“Come back to the County Fair“ on Saturday, March 21, as Washington County celebrates Kentucky 4-H’s 100th Anniversary with a Centennial Celebration at the River of Life Community Church from 10 to 2 p.m.  The public is invited to attend the celebration with all activities and food priced at 25 cents.  Horse rides, a petting zoo, shooting gallery, children’s games, cotton candy, popcorn, hot dogs and birthday cake will all be part of the day designed to include the entire family. The doors will open at 10 a.m. with the opening ceremony at 10:15 a.m. and all of the activities beginning at the conclusion of the opening. Performances will take place every half hour with door prizes at the 15 minute intervals.

There will be silent auction items and giveaway baskets donated by local clubs and extension organizations.  A 4-H Hall of Fame tree will be ready for community members to place a leaf on with the name of who impacted them through 4-H.  The local post office has prepared a special stamp cancellation for the day.

Why come early?  You won’t want to miss out on the opening talent performances of former and current 4-H members, along with the recognition of volunteers who have made a difference to the program over the years.  

The planning committee is still looking for 4-H families who will bring a poster exhibit of pictures and their 4-H family history.  Anyone who has held on to old 4-H projects or trophies and plaques, ten years of age or older, should bring those on Saturday for a special display table and recognition.  Anyone with posters, exhibits or awards should have them at River of Life no later than 9:30 a.m.

The history of Kentucky and Washington Co.’s 4-H program will be a big part of the day’s event.   When the 75th birthday of Kentucky 4-H was celebrated in 1984, Vernon Moore helped collect information on how Washington County 4-H began.

Although 4-H began in 1909 in Kentucky, the organization of Washington County 4-H’s first agricultural club didn’t occur until 1917.  The first County Extension Agent in Washington County was a Mr. Morgan.  John R. Barber reported that County Agent Morgan formed the first Corn Club and that he, John Barber, had been the President.

In those days, many young people had 4-H projects,however, there were few clubs for them to belong to.  The County Fair was where they showed off their accomplishments, receiving ribbons and awards, much like today.

Orear Barnett reported a story in The Springfield Sun in 1926.  Red Gardner (County Agent) organized four junior Agricultural Clubs in Washington County.  The clubs were located at Lincoln, Maud, Pleasant Grove and Kirkland.  Mr. Barnett also wrote about going to 4-H Week in Lexington.  Other members of the group were J.R. Montgomery, Tom Ballard, Junior Peters, Garvey Haydon and Arron Nalley.

More of the history of Washington County 4-H will be shared on Saturday and the planning committee hopes the community will attend and enjoy the day’s events. For more information on the Centennial Celebration, contact the Washington County Extension Office at 336-7741.


4-H members have one week to get in their registration for the county-wide 4-H Talent Show scheduled for Thursday, March 26, at the River of Life Church. Registration is due by March 23. The event begins at 6:30 p.m. and is open to the public. Admission is $1.

This week’s Centennial photos are participants in previous 4-H Talent competitions.  Call if you know what clubs are featured in the photos.


The deadline is quickly approaching for families that want to register for the 4-H Family Bowling Day at Phillips Lanes in Campbellsville on March 28. A limited number of spaces is available.  The final day for registration will be Monday, March 26.  For more information, contact the extension office at 336-7741.