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4-H members tell their stories through Mark of Excellence essays

June 23, 2012
Daily Press

ESCANABA - Each year, 4-H members ages 11 and 12 are asked to complete a short essay and share all the opportunities the 4-H program has been able to offer them.

Two youth who complete the essay will represent Delta County as Mark of Excellence Delegates during the Michigan State Awards Program held at Michigan 4-H Exploration Days on the MSU Campus this week. This year three members accepted this challenge.

Their essays are as follows:

Renee Perrault

Delta Sure Shots Club

Because of 4-H, I can learn a lot of new things. When I was in the 4-H Shooting Club, I learned how to shoot BB gun correctly, safely, and in different positions. My favorite part about shooting a BB gun was shooting at the targets and getting a good score and shooting candy during our Christmas party. I also liked meeting new friends and playing new games.

I can also shoot a bow because of the 4-H youth shooting program. It was not my favorite part of the program because it was hard for me to pull back the string and shoot the arrow. I did enjoy when our instructor, Dave, put balloons as targets and we got to shoot them.

This program helped me with responsibility and allowed me to meet friends I might not otherwise have met. I also helped me pass my Hunter's Safety course.

Because of 4-H I learned how to encourage and help other kids. In the summer, attending the Cloverbud's camp was a highlight. I always tried to help out the leaders and other children. I remember doing arts & craft projects and because there were so many kids, I learned to share. Even though I am a little older now, I still enjoy arts & crafts and hope to be a counselor one day for 4-H.

Because of 4-H I will be able to make a difference in my family, school, church, and community. By using the 4-H Pledge and Motto, I am able to think more clearly about situations I'm in and make better decisions for myself and others. I have become a better person because of 4-H.

Charlie Lippens

County Line Swine Club

Because of 4-H, I can learn new things that are not taught in school. I joined a swine 4-H club and learned how to raise a hog for the fair. I also learned that hogs don't sweat, so I need to keep a shaded spot for them to keep cool and out of the sun. Furthermore, I learned that hogs exposed to the sun can get sunburned. I learned that if hogs are penned outside and their water is hooked up to a garden hose that in hot summer days the hose will heat up and so does the water to the pigs so they will not drink from it an can be dehydrated.

The swine 4-H project has given me some good ideas, tips, and information so I can raise a good market project.

I have also been in 4-H Archery. I have learned the parts of a bow, how to use one safely, and the correct way to hold and shoot.

Lastly, I think the coolest thing about 4-H is hanging out and making new friends. I wouldn't have this chance if we didn't have 4-H or parents who care and are willing to help us learn and grow with 4-H.

Rachel Bessonen

Delta Sure Shots Club

My involvement in 4-H is mainly through the Sure Shots. It has taught me many valuable lessons and provided many memorable experiences.

Lessons I have learned include: how to safely handle a gun and bow, proper marksmanship with a pellet gun, correct archery shooting techniques, to recite the 4-H pledge, working with a team of shooters and competing in a shooting competition, learning from other to improve my skills, sharing of equipment and showing patience towards others.

Being a club member also requires meeting attendance, selling goods to raise money for the club, and to help encourage others to improve their skills by sharing constructive criticism.

The memories I have experienced because of 4-H include: meeting new friends, shooting at 3-D archery targets, trying new activities outside of school, using the skills learned in 4-H to pass Michigan Hunter's Safety training and being able to join my family deer hunting and staying at camp. I have also taken after school archery because I liked shooting in my 4-H club.

Sure Shots has taught me to better understand and enjoy the outdoors and hunting. I feel more confident when hunting with my family.

With my exposure to 4-H in Delta County, I would like to attend Exploration Days at Michigan State University. This will further allow me to try new activities and to find other activities that I want to do as I grow up. I can also visit the college my father, grandfather, and great grandfather attended.

4-H Exploration Days is an annual MSU pre-college program that attracts approximately 2500 youth participants from across the state. Fifty Delta county youth will be attending this week-long experience which also includes a citizenship trip. Youth planning committee members have selected to tour Colonial Michilimackinac, the Detroit Zoo, and the Holocaust Memorial Center.



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