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I was excited to read your recent article on the Sedgwick County Fair. However, that excitement soon turned to disappointment as I found zero mention of the Sedgwick County 4-H program, its members or their exhibits, which are an integral part of the fair.

Livestock, the livestock auction, food, rocketry, entomology, geology, photography, woodworking and horticulture are just a few of the projects from which 4-H members learn life skills. The hard work done by the 4-H members could have been viewed by your readers at the fair via handmade furniture, posters, note books, baked goods, hand sewn clothing, rabbits, etc., if information had been supplied by your staff.

Instead, what did I see? One paragraph on the beer garden and two paragraphs about the demolition derby. Indeed, drinking and destruction were emphasized while the 4-H part of the fair, which represents the culmination of a year’s work by its youth members (under the direction of parents and volunteers), was never mentioned.

I believe in past years I have seen and appreciated some articles in your paper written after the fair, which tell results/ribbons that were received by local 4-H members, but I am addressing the lack of pre-fair publicity that might have encouraged people to attend the fair and admire the work of the 4-H members.

In this age when “negative news” seems to be the norm, perhaps knowledge of the positive 4-H program could lend some optimism to the citizens in this area. Citizenship, leadership and life skills are the foundation of the 4-H program. Surely such standards are worthy of the support of this newspaper.

 

JOYCE ALLEN

Derby, Kansas

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