Monday, October 8, 2012

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

4-H Science Night

Join us for the 4-H National Youth Science Day.  The 2012 National 4-H Science Experiment, the 4-H Eco-Bot Challenge, explores how robots can be used to preserve and protect the environment.   Youth will assemble an Eco-Bot.  4-H science day is designed for 8-14 year olds and will be held at the Agricultural Conference Center on Wednesday, October 10 at 6:00 pm.  To register, contact Watauga County 4-H at 264-3061 or email

Science Fair Opportunity

Is your family looking forward to participating in a science fair this school year?  If you are not plugged in with a science fair, there may be an alternative for you.  Not all schools may offer a science fair.  The process of creating a science experiment can be rewarding and educational in many ways.  

A 4-H Science Fair will be held Saturday, January 12, 2013 at the Catawba Science Center.  This 4-H Science Fair has been successfully held for four years and for the last two years has been a qualifying event allowing youth to take their projects on to the regional and state science fairs (optional).

The fair is open to 5-18 year olds.  It is designed to be a thorough, educational experience.  The science fair is open to many counties in our region and youth from Watauga County are eligible to participate.  The organizers have some great materials on putting together a science project and will be offering information sessions to help navigate through the process.   Contact the Watauga County 4-H office if you are interested.  More science fair resources are posted on our science link... see here....

Categories include:
Life Science
Physical Science
Earth and Environment
Technology and Engineering

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Teacher Workday Fun

Photo Credit:

Looking for something to do this September's teacher workdays?  Here is an opportunity for 9 year olds and older.  It will be led by Extension staff.     The times are Thursday Sept. 27  from 1 to 3 and Friday September 28 from 8:00 am until 5 pm.
Learn about the flora and fauna found on Appalachian Balds and in Spruce-Fir Forest ecosystems.  We'll investigate the plants, wildlife, and insects that are unique to these habitats and discover how these organisms have adapted to the harsh conditions of some of the highest and most exposed ridges in the Southern Appalachians. The dates are September 27 and 28 2012. Friday we will have a hike in Grayson Highlands State Park and have the chance to observe many different types of plants and animals. We will observe the Wild Ponies that are used for vegetation management in the park. Great photo opportunities! As the hike is considered moderate to difficult, this class is for kids 9 and up.  Please call 264-3061 to register.   

Monday, August 20, 2012

Find Out About 4-H

Explore the world with 4-H.  4-H information session Tuesday, September 4 6:30pm at the Agricultural Conference Center.  Learn about ways your family can explore topics from plants and animals to science, earth education and more!  For more information, contact Watauga County 4-H at 264-3061.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Mountain State Fair

Did you make or grow some interesting items this summer? 

Why not share them with others and display them at the Mountain State Fair.  Winning a ribbon or prize money is a pleasant reward for making something fun. 
The fair runs September 7-16 at the WNC Agricultural Center in Fletcher.
To make it easier for us, the fair offers the Pony Express.  They will pick up your non-perisable items and return them- at no charge.
Then, all you need to do is go down and see all the great entries and entertainment (if you want to).  
Drop off your items at the Watauga Extension office by the morning of Wednesday, August 22.  

Adult and youth categories are available.  
Here are some fun youth categories:
Oddities of the garden
Largest fruit or vegetable
Giants of the Garden
School art
Decorating a pumpkin or gourd
Shoe box float parade- make a float out of a shoe box
All sorts of crafts and arts, from sewing, photographs, jewelry, tie dye, model kits, pottery, woodworking and more!

The deadline for most entry forms is August 24. See the website for more details.  The Extension office has copies of the fair catalog as well, if you would like to stop by and take a look.  

Friday, July 6, 2012

Livestock Showmanship Clinic

Livestock Showmanship Clinic
9:00 am
August 4th, 2012
at WNC Agriculture Center – Livestock Sales Arena

Open To ALL Youth!
If you have an interest in learning tips on showing Livestock of ANY TYPE call today to reserve your spot!
will be provided to all the Participants

Please RSVP by July 20th at 828-687-1414 ext 210

Monday, May 7, 2012

4-H Super Summer

Join us for great fun this summer.  Our 4-H Super Summer workshops help youth explore a variety of topics, get ideas for new things to explore, create, get outdoors, have fun and meet other people. 

We will build bird houses, explore plants, from edible to poisonous, make perfume, blast off rockets and more!

See HERE for welcome/information letter, a flyer listing the workshops, and registration forms

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Summer Opportunity

Horticultural Science Summer Institute
July 8-13th, 2012

Through North Carolina State University and North Carolina Cooperative Extension’s 4-H Youth Program with the Department of Horticultural Science.

High school-aged youth (rising sophomores, juniors and seniors) are invited to apply to a new weeklong, residential horticultural experience on the campus of NC State University. Youth will have hands-on opportunities to explore a broad range of horticultural possibilities from breeding better fruits and vegetables, growing a diverse selection of woody ornamentals, lengthening the life of cut flowers, learning sustainable production practices and delving into tools that enhance our understanding of plant production processes. Participants will visit a variety of horticultural businesses.  Youth will also be introduced to career possibilities, college-making decisions and leadership development.

The cost of the institute will be $500 with a $150 deposit due upon application acceptance. Scholarships may be available.

Click here to submit an application! Applications due by May 21, 2012.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Teen Citizenship

Citizenship North Carolina Focus

June 11-13, 2012, Raleigh, NC

Who:           100-170 North Carolina 4-H youth, ages 14-19, and appropriate adult partners, selected by application. Recruiting at least 2 per county – new or returning youth.

What:           Dynamic learning focused on civic engagement and understanding government

When:  Monday June 11 – Wednesday June 13, 2012

Where:          Sheraton Downtown; Legislative Offices; Raleigh, NC

Why:           To inspire engaged citizenship and continued volunteerism among NC youth


Monday, March 5, 2012

Love chickens?

Youth Poultry Camp
Poultry Science Summer Institute (PSSI)
Current 10th and 11th graders
Held the first full week of August at NC State
Application deadline:  May 2
Cost:  $50.00

Click HERE for more information

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Teen Opportunities 2012
Looking for ways to expand your world?  Meet new friends, explore new places, attend fun workshops and learn new things you can do.  Fun included.
Mark your calendar now for these upcoming, annual events:

Teen Retreat
Meet other 4-H’ers from across the district, attend workshops and have fun!
March 30-31;  Swannanoa 4-H Camp

Citizenship NC Focus
Interested in citizenship and how our state legislature works? Apply for the
8th Annual 4-H Citizenship North Carolina Focus  June 11-13, in Raleigh  
Ages 14-19 and adult escorts. Two per county are eligible to attend.

4-H Camp
Summer 2012
Click HERE for a listing of 4-H camps for 13 year olds and older

4-H Congress
July 16-19
13 year olds and older 4-H participants
Part-time participation is available as well
Join in the annual state event with over 800 youth, volunteers and agents from across the state. Meet 4-H’ers from every county in the state, attend workshops, fun activities, see NC State, experience dorm life, and more.  Learn more things you can do in 4-H
see video HERE

Youth Voice Summit
August 17-18
Raleigh, NC
Brainstorm solutions to the top issues youth face in North Carolina and their communities

State 4-H Council
November 3-4
Raleigh, NC
Join other 4-H’ers across the region for inspiration, fun, and more!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Fruit Fun

Growing your own fruits and berries is lots of fun!  Order your plants and benefit Watauga County 4-H

The fruit plant sale order form is available at the Extension office at 971 West King Street, 264-3061 or can be downloaded HERE
Orders are due by Friday, March 30.   The plants will arrive Friday, April 20, 12:00-6:00 and Saturday, April 21, 9:30-12:30

Ways to have fun with fruits and berries:
Grow strawberries in a creative container. The Seascape variety does well in containers
We offer these strawberry varieties:  Seascape and Chandler
Make an edible landscape with blueberry bushes.  Have fun making blueberry pies, pancakes, muffins and more!
We offer Blue Crop, Blue Ray, Jersey, Blue Chip, Duke varieties
Make something crazy in the kitchen.  Invent a recipe, experiment- add raspberries to your salad.  Make a raspberry vinegar.
We offer Caroline and Josephine varieties of raspberries.
Blackberries make great dyes.  Experiment with plant dyes from your garden. 
We offer Chester and Ouachita varieties of blackberries. 
Want to cool down in the summer?  Pop a frozen grape in your mouth.  Or for a wild experiment, make “grape lightning”- pop a grape half in your microwave (adult supervision here please)
We offer Concord and Catawba varieties this year.
Apples connect us with our heritage.   Carve dried apple faces with your extra apples. 
We offer the following heritage varieties:  Virginia Beauty and Yellow Transparent;  Gala is also offered. 
Play with your food.  Food art is lots of fun.  Pears make a great canvas for creating all sort of art.
We have Bartlett and D’Anjou varieties
Explore fruit drying.  Make your own solar food dehydrator.
What is a dried plum called?
Plum varieties:  Damon, Mount Royal
Since we are toting fruits and vegetables, we had to add some vegetables to our plant sale!  Is rhubarb a vegetable?
Explore the medicinal benefits of plants grown in your yard.  Rhubarb has historically been used as a medicinal plant.  Who is credited with bringing Rhubarb to America?
Do any vegetables grow each year without having to be sown?  Rhubarb and asparagus are two perennial vegetables. 
Explore the world with fruits and vegetables- geography, history, cultures, art, science.  Do you know where asparagus was first raised?  Why is asparagus green?  Asparagus would make a fun paintbrush. 
We offer the Hybrid F2 variety.  It does not have a pretty name.  How about renaming it….  The Green Clover Asparagus variety, in honor of 4-H?!
Asparagus does not bear its produce for us right away, so it teaches us patience.   So many fun and tasty things to learn and do in the garden!  

Monday, February 20, 2012

4-H Camps 2012

Can't make it to camp with us the week of 
June 24-29?  Other 4-H camping opportunities are available directly with the 4-H camps across North Carolina:

North Carolina 4-H Specialty Camps - 2012
Check each camp’s website for more details and registration forms

Betsy – Jeff Penn 4-H 
Cloverbud (ages 5-8)                                    July 15-18                           $180
Leader in Training (LIT) (ages 15-17)         Weekly                           $475

Eastern 4-H Center  –
Cloverbud Camp (ages 5-8) July 15-19 $300
Cloverbud Camp (ages 5-8) July 22-26 $300
Marine Science & Sailing (ages 12-17) July 15-20 $460
Camp Canvasback (ages 12-17) July 15-20 $460 educates young hunters on waterfowl conservation.
Takeoff 4-Health (ages 12-18) July 22-Aug 10               

Millstone 4-H
Fur, Fish & Game Rendezvous (age 12-15) June 20-25 $385
4-H Horsemanship Camp (ages 9-19) June 13-19 $390
Camp Corral (age 8-15)                   July 15-20, 22-27, 29-8/3 No Charge for children of wounded or disabled veterans

Sertoma 4-H
Deaf Camp (Ages 8-16) June 17-22 $350

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

4-H Fruit Plant Sale

The annual 4-H Fruit Plant Sale flyer is now available.
This year, we expand our fruit trees by adding plum and pear trees. Several varieties of heritage apples continue, along with the usual offerings of blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries.

Most of our berries come in the form of bare roots, rather than potted in soil in containers. This allows the plants to be sold at a lower cost. One possible advantage to bare root plants is that the plants do not have to transition between soils and may       establish more quickly.                                               

However, we do have some varieties of blueberries and grapes in containers.
We continue with the asparagus and rhubarb, which did well last year.

Informational Links on growing fruits:

 Photograph provided by Erica Cornett

Explore 4-H!

5-9 year olds explore fun, hands-on 4-H activities from taste science to hovercrafts.  Meets monthly at the Agricultural Conference Center.
Next meetings:
Thursday, March 1, 6:00
Thursday, April 5, 6:00

4-H Teen Retreat

Join us for the District 4-H Teen Retreat!
March 30-31
Swannanoa 4-H Center

Teen Retreat is a great way to meet others in 4-H, get inspired, learn more about 4-H opportunities, and have fun!

Cost:  $65.00
Registration deadline:  March 2 by noon

Friday evening:  dinner, opening meeting, organized games, 4-H campfire
Saturday:  3 workshops, and lunch
Workshop topics include options such as teamwork, leadership, citizenship and more!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Video Games Meet STEM (science, technology, engineering, math)

For those who love video games (5th grade on up), here is a competition to design original video games.   Due date is March 12. 
If all else, maybe the website could offer some ideas to harness education, math and science to the appeal of video games-  The Resource section lists some game-making platforms

Friday, January 27, 2012

NC OMK (NC Operation Military Child) is excited to announce the 5th Annual NC Operation: Military Kids Visual Arts Contest. The contest is open to all North Carolina youth. Age categories are 5-8, 9-10, 11-12, 13-15, and 16-19. Designed to introduce youth to the Visual Arts as a part of the 4-H Expressive Arts Curriculum, youth will utilize their skills and their artistry to capture their views of America and patriotism.

This year’s themes are:

- Love of the USA
- All American Kids
- Spirit of Patriotism
- Military Life

- Honoring Our Heroes

Contest rules and guidelines can be found at or

Eligibility of Photos: All photographs must have been taken by youth between the dates of May 1, 2011 and the time of entry. Photos may be submitted only one time and in only one division and class to the North Carolina Operation: Military Kids photography contest.

Eligibility of Artwork: All artwork must have been created by youth between the dates of May 1, 2011 and the time of entry. Artwork may be submitted only one time and in only one division and class to the North Carolina Operation: Military Kids Visual Arts contest.

Entry Deadline: ENTRIES must arrive in the North Carolina 4-H Youth Development Office, postmarked no later than Monday, April 30, 2012.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Research Apprenticeship Program

Hands-on, residential program in science research for high school juniros and seniors.
June 24-July 20
If you have interest in careers in the food, agricultural, environmental, family and consumer sciences, this may be for you
Live on campus of NC A&T and work under the direction of top research scientists to produce an independent research project.

Applications Due February 28

For information, click Here

Monday, January 23, 2012

High School Students

NC State University is offering a hands-on learning opportunity for students to explore a variety of potential fields, including aquatic ecology, fish biology, aquaculture, conservation biology, veterinary medicine, fisheries management, and other related fields.

It is our hope to distribute this information to a variety of students, so students know about the opportunity and can apply if interested. Please see the attached flyer to learn more about our 2012 NC State University Aquatic Sciences Day Camp that will be held on Saturday, April 21, 2012.

The application deadline in February 1st, 2012.

Our website offers information about the upcoming camp along with the online application:

High School Students

NC State University is offering a hands-on learning opportunity for students to explore a variety of potential fields, including aquatic ecology, fish biology, aquaculture, conservation biology, veterinary medicine, fisheries management, and other related fields.

It is our hope to distribute this information to a variety of students, so students know about the opportunity and can apply if interested. Please see the attached flyer to learn more about our 2012 NC State University Aquatic Sciences Day Camp that will be held on Saturday, April 21, 2012.

The application deadline in February 1st, 2012.

Our website offers information about the upcoming camp along with the online application:

Opportunities for Juniors and Seniors

Summer Ventures in Science and Mathematics (SVSM) is a cost-free, state-funded program for academically talented North Carolina residents who may pursue careers based in science and mathematics. The program brings rising juniors and seniors together in residential settings for intensive study.
A statewide program of the University of North Carolina system, SVSM is administered by the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics. Four campuses of the university system host the SVSM institutes, including Appalachian State.

See site and information below:

Scholarship Opportunity

Herter-O'Neal Scholarship
$750 Available for Tuition and/or Books

The scholarship is offered to anyone pursuing a college degree (Associates and/or Bachelors) in business or a business-related field of study. Must be enrolled to attend classes at a college during the 2012-2013 school year
Applications due by Friday, March 9.

Call 264-3061 for more information

Boost your career in Agriculture

Institute for Future Agricultural Leaders (IFAL) for Rising High School Seniors, June 10-15, 2012 at North Carolina A&T State University

FREE - There is no cost for students to participate in this unique program. Sponsored by N.C. Farm Bureau.

Outstanding rising high school seniors are invited to apply for a free, one-week residential program where they'll be exposed to academic and research programs in the School of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences while also being introduced to careers in the food, agricultural, and environmental sciences.

Find an IFAL application form and applications guidelines at


Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Explore 4-H

Interested in 4-H? Monthly meetings are offered for 5-9 year olds to explore the different topics available in 4-H. We have made kites, planted "Tickle Me Plants", met some sheep, explored pet safety, explored Glow in the Dark science and more! Join us for more fun topics in 2012. We have been meeting on the second Monday of the month at 6:00 at the Agricultural Conference Center. Contact us if you are interested in attending so we can keep you updated on meeting details as dates and locations may change (especially in the winter!)

4-H Camp Registration Open

January 27 is the target date for registrations:

Enrollment for 4-H Camp for Summer 2012 is now open. Watauga County 4-H will escort a group of 8-14 year old campers to Betsy-Jeff Penn 4-H Center. The center is located above Greensboro in Rockingham County, near Reidsville. The camping week is June 24-June 29. To guarantee a spot, register by January 27. The good news is you can reserve your spot with a $100.00 deposit and have until June to save up for the rest of the fee, which is $330.00 more (total of $430.00). The fee covers meals, lodging, t-shirt, transportation to camp and more. Registration will continue beyond January 27, but spaces may not be guaranteed.

Click here for the registration form.

See the camp website here