COUNTDOWN: 4-Hers get ready for county fair

Published 10:17 am Friday, July 3, 2009

ROME TOWNSHIP — In about a week the Lawrence County Fairgrounds will bustle with the shouts from carny vendors, music from the carnival rides, and the laughter from the 4-H members hoping their animal will take the prize.

But before all that happens, 4-Hers have got to get the place cleaned up. That’s what’s been on their plate for the past few weeks.

The first part of June brought out several clubs to the fairgrounds to scrub and paint. Among those were Greasy Ridge Gang, Ranch Hands, Scottown Farmers and Farmerettes and Arabia All-Stars.

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Most recently the young people from the Greasy Ridge Gang came back for several trips to paint the arena among other chores.

That’s all a part of following the principles of the 4-H organization: Head, Heart, Health and Hand.

“Our kids say we are working from the heart,” Jeri Stallo, an adviser for the Greasy Ridge Gang, said. “They kept wanting to come back and back. To serve means you have to work. This has to be a labor of love.”

Looking at the fair as a week of fun Stallo said she told her club, “It will be more fun if you have ownership.”

Both Stallo and fellow adviser Vicki Hardy-Hill are veterans of the youth organization. Hardy-Hill, who also participated in the fair as a 4-H member, wants the young people in the club to appreciate the value of volunteering.

“How important it is to give time to different agencies and organizations,” she said. “A little bit of time can change a lot.”

Madison Hill, who will participate in the market hogs project this year, has been associated with 4-H for seven years. As she was getting ready to start a couple of hours of painting Wednesday night, she talked about why she is willing to donate her time to cleaning up the fairgrounds.

“It helps the community,” she said.