Perspectives Online

N.C. 4-H celebrates 100 Years during State Congress

The North Carolina 4-H program celebrated its 100th year in July as 4-H’ers from across the state met in Raleigh for the annual 4-H Congress, when the program hosted the N.C. 4-H Centennial Homecoming Celebration.

4-H Congress is the highlight of the year for the state’s 4-H’ers as delegations from every North Carolina county converge on Raleigh for a week of competition and other events.

Among the week’s events of note:

  • The Centennial Homecoming Celebration was held at the North Carolina State Fairgrounds Exposition Center. More than 1,300 former 4-H’ers and other guests attended a dinner and program, sponsored by the North Carolina Farm Bureau. Speakers included North Carolina Secretary of State Elaine Marshall, State Senator Dan Blue, Dr. Johnny Wynne, dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, and Larry Wooten, N.C. Farm Bureau president. The evening included an alumni reunion and program showcase at the Kerr Scott Building at the fairgrounds. Sponsored by Carolina Farm Credit, the reunion featured exhibits of historic and current 4-H programs.
  • At the Jane S. McKimmon Center on the N.C. State University campus, the inaugural class of the North Carolina 4-H Hall of Fame, sponsored by the North Carolina State Grange, was announced. One hundred individuals were recognized for their contributions to the 4-H program with induction into the Hall of Fame. The first 4-H Hall of Fame class was picked from nominations submitted by North Carolina Cooperative Extension county centers, 4-H groups, Cooperative Extension staff and others.
  • A Rockin’ Clover Bash took place after the Centennial Homecoming Celebration, at the Kerr Scott Building at the fairgrounds. Most of the more than 700 4-H’ers attending 4-H Congress attended the bash, which featured a DJ and green and white balloon drop.
The North Carolina 4-H program is the youth development program of NorthCarolina Cooperative Extension, which is based at N.C. State and N.C. A&T State universities. More than 239,000 young people between the ages of 5 and 19 participate in North Carolina 4-H activities with the help of 23,000 adult and youth volunteers.

The 4-H program began in North Carolina as corn and tomato clubs in 1909 in Ahoskie. 4-H today includes activities ranging from rocketry to workforce development and nutrition programs along with camping at five residential facilities across the state. North Carolina 4-H today is a community of young people who are learning leadership, citizenship and 21st century life skills that will enhance their lives and prepare them to be tomorrow’s leaders.