Over 700 4-H and FFA members in Dodge County will display projects ranging from dairy animals and rabbits to entomology, photography, cultural arts, and much much more at this year’s Dodge County Fair, August 14-18 at Beaver Dam. The opportunity to display each member’s work for the year is an important aspect of the fair.

Woodworking Project

Youth learn valuable skills and display their hard work at the Dodge County Fair

“County fairs are the culmination of a year’s accomplishment and learning through individual projects,” said Schoenike.

“The competition aspect is often seen as one 4-H member competing against another. In reality, the individual 4-H member is competing against a standard of excellence in that project area.”

Showmanship is also an important part of fair exhibition. The preparation and workmanship required for 4-H fair exhibition require skills that can help a member throughout his or her life. For instance, preparation, appearance and public speaking abilities are important for job interviews and on most jobs throughout life.

County Fair competition builds young people’s sense of self-confidence, teaches them cooperation and shows them how to react gracefully, whether they win or lose. Judging projects shows young people and their families that each individual has opinions. Young people learn to respect the fact that different judges have different opinions.

The public displays at the county fair also educate the community about what young people can do if they have the opportunity. County fairs show people that 4-H is an educational program and young people really are learning skills – both in their project areas and in the areas of showmanship, communication and leadership. “4-H displays at the fair bring the county together once a year to see what young people can do and how adults and youth can work together to reach their goals.”

For more information about the 4-H exhibitions at this year’s Dodge County Fair, contact Sally Schoenike at the UW-Extension Office 386-3790.