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Spring youth events start with SPIN
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SPIN clubs are a “Special Interest” 4-H Club and any Barton County youth is invited to get involved in 4-H in this unique way. This will be an opportunity for youth in grades 1-5 to learn more about 4-H in Barton County and learn more about Foods. The Decorating Foods SPIN club will be held from 3:30–4:45 p.m. on Tuesdays April 18 through May 19, at the Extension Office. We will be decorating cupcakes and cookies but also fruit, vegetables and breads. Sign up at the Extension Office by April 11th.
The Tractor Safety Course for Barton County youth age 13-18 will be held from 6:30–8:30 p.m. Thursday, April 27 and from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, April 29, at Barton Community College CNH Training Facility. Pre-registration is required, so please stop by the Barton County Extension Office, 1800 12th St., to enroll and pay the fee. The cost of the class is $15 and registration is requested by April 20th.
In order for youth ages 14 and 15 to work for hire, they must pass a youth safe tractor and machinery operation program or complete a similar course conducted as part of a high school agriculture program. Youth who are under age 14 may take the course with the instructor’s permission; however, they must be 14 to receive a Certificate of Training.
Participants must pass an exam covering tasks that have been identified as having the greatest risk of injury, critical farm hazards and the minimum competencies needed to safely operate agricultural tractors and equipment and perform other hazardous farm work.
Camps are a great summer activity. Several camp activities will be offered this summer. Heart of Kansas 4-H camp is for 1st through 7th graders and will be held at Rock Springs Ranch June 7-10. Campference is a camping/conference event for youth age 12-14 and it will be held June 27-30 at Rock Springs Ranch. Discovery Days is a mini-college experience held on the K-State University campus May 30 through June 2, and this event is for youth age 13-19. If you have questions about any of these events, more information is available by contacting the Extension Office.
Last, but not least, there will be a part-time, temporary position available at the Extension Office during the months of June through the first part of August for approximately 25 hours per week. We are looking for a creative, hard-working, college-age student or older who is willing to work the flexible hours set by the Extension agents. Experience with 4-H is preferred. Interested individuals may come to the Extension Office at 1800 12th St. in Great Bend for an application.

Berny Unruh is the 4-H and Youth Development Extension Agent in Barton County. She is a guest columnist for the Great Bend Tribune. She can be reached at 620-793-1910 or at