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Living in San Carlos August 9, 2008

Eaton Hills 4-H Club shows big at the Fair.

by Chuck Gillooley

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Having been a 4-H’er myself many years ago, I know that the San Mateo County Fair is essentially the “Super Bowl” for the local 4-H clubs.  It’s their grand stage to showcase the various projects they’ve been working on all year.   Did you know that San Carlos will have a huge presence at the Fair this year?  The San Carlos Eaton Hills 4-H Club will have many animal entries and various craft and other exhibits on display this week at the Fair.

The San Carlos-Eaton Hills 4-H Club has grown substantially over the years and now boasts over 85 members, according to San Carlos resident Bruce Knoth, who directs the Club.  4-H’s goal is to develop good citizens and leaders by instilling confidence and developing the skills of children. Older members go on to become leaders in the club, and help the younger members become part of 4-H. It’s a great way for kids to learn responsibility, leadership skills, and have tons of fun in the process.

Most people associate 4-H with raising animals.  If you’ve ever taken a walk up to the top of Oak Creek Lane (way at the top, just off Eaton Ave) you’ve certainly seen some of the pens where the Club cares for their animals.  Their animal projects include beekeeping, rabbits, poultry, swine, goats, sheep, and dogs.   But 4-H is MUCH more than just raising animals — the Eaton Hills Club offers many projects, including public speaking, woodworking, knitting, cooking, auto mechanics, and web design.   And ALL of these projects are being viewed and judged this week at the San Mateo County Fair.

On that note, if Bruce’s name sounds familiar, you may recall that his daughter Anya used her R.O.P.E.S. project this year to change the City Ordinance in San Carlos for raising chickens within the city limits.   I wrote a post on this very topic earlier:  Fowl is Now Fair in San Carlos.   Anya entered this project in the Fair this year and won a “Best of Show” award for it.  Nice work, Anya!

4-H was a phenomenal experience for me when I was a kid growing up in Emerald Hills.  I was involved in everything from building and showing electrical projects, to raising a lamb for the Fair.   Of all my experiences with the Fair though, the barn experience was by far the best.  When you show animal at the Fair, it’s a BIG commitment.   4-H’ers arrive very early every morning, feed the livestock, clean the barn, and prepare for the competitions of the day. They feed again at the end of the day, and there are several social activities during the week.    It’s not unusual to see a 10 year-old moving a goat through the barn or a teenager sheparding a 1,200 lb steer. The 4-Her’s work hard at Fair and are rewarded with strong friendships, unique skills, and the satisfaction of plain hard work (mucking out stalls every morning has its rewards!)

So, if you’re looking for a fun, local getaway before the summer break ends, go to the San Mateo County Fair and check out what your fellow San Carlos residents are up to.  Be sure to take a walk through the Barn and see all of the amazing animals.   The Fair only runs through August 17th, so don’t miss it.  For details on the Fair, including tickets and event schedule, check out their website:

San Mateo County Fair

If you’re interested in finding out more about the San Carlos Eaton Hills 4-H club, they will be holding their first meeting for the next year on September 16th at 7:00 PM@ Clifford School.   Details about the Club are also on their website:

San Carlos-Eaton Hills 4-H Club

Good luck to all the 4-H’ers at the Fair!

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Eaton Hills 4-H Club shows big at the Fair., 4.0 out of 5 based on 2 ratings
Comments 5
  • Thanks for posting about this. Joining the 4H wasn’t something that occurred to me before, but I think my kids would love it.

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  • Thanks for the write-up, Chuck. We look forward to seeing you at the Fair!

    – Bruce

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  • I was a 4-Her for 10 years and can attest to all the amazing things that 4-H can teach kids–responsibility, the circle of life, sportsmanship. The fact that San Carlos has a thriving 4-H club is one of the reasons that it’s #1 on our list of places to buy a house.

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  • Nathalee,

    I had a similar experience with 4-H when I was growing up in the Emerald Hills area. It was an awesome experience (especially the fair) and I learned a ton of things that I probably wouldn’t have learned elsewhere — basics of electricity, woodwork, etc. My dad taught some of these projects, so that made the experience even better. With 85 members and growing, the Eaton Hills Club is destined for great things.

    Thanks for checking in!

    Chuck

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  • SC Resident,

    It’s definitely a good experience for kids — lots of great life lessons, and a strong sense of responsibility. It’s a great alternative for kids who are looking for activities that are non-sports oriented, since there are already numerous sports options in San Carlos.

    Chuck

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