Baldwin County 4-H will offer a variety of events this summer that will allow area kids to learn life skills while making new friends and having a lot of fun.

4-H Agent Brittany Harrison said there are several fun days planned for the summer, but there are a couple she is particularly excited about.

One will happen on July 17, and it will be an opportunity for Harrison to share her knowledge as a family and consumer sciences agent.

“I’m bringing to the table ‘Basics in the Kitchen,’ which is a whole day where they’re going to learn about food safety and some basic cooking skills, and then the following day they’re going to put those to the test and actually cook breakfast and lunch and a dessert,” she said.

Harrison said kids will have an opportunity to create dishes like a watermelon pizza, for example. For breakfast, they will learn to cook omelets, when she’ll teach them how to crack eggs and flip the omelets. Recipes from the event will be sent home.

“The things that I’m teaching them to do are so simple that they can do it with their parents,” she said.

Since Harrison is ServSafe certified, she’ll also teach the kids food safety such as how to properly wash their hands, use a knife and prevent foodborne illness.

“They’re going to learn so much information in that eight-hour day,” she said.

Another exciting event will be a free class in July called “Your Money Your Future Day.”

“I’m super-excited about that because we haven’t done that in the past here, and it’s something that’s so important,” Harrison said. “Our youth need to learn about financial literacy. The curriculum that I’m using is so good that they’re going to understand the basics, and I think they’re going to really benefit from it.”

Kids will have an opportunity to learn more about financial skills at other events during the summer as well, particularly on “Nifty Thrifty Day.” Harrison said the event was a hit last year as the group visited two thrift stores in Macon and were challenged to come up with the nicest outfit for the least expense. The winner was treated to a free lunch.

“Even if they didn’t win, they got good discounts on some quality items,” Harrison said.

Youth participants don’t have to be in 4-H, but they must be rising fourth-graders. The hope is that once they see all that the organization has to offer, they will become more involved.

“We definitely want them to come and stay, and we offer so many things throughout the year…,” Harrison said.

4-H Program Assistant Haylie Introcaso said in addition to the summer fun days, there are also a couple of other educational programs in the works for the summer. One is a forestry program in where kids will learn about nature, how to score trees, identify diseases and much more.

“It’s fun, but it’s also an educational program,” she said.

There will also be a DIY program that will include a series of four days in which kids will be given specific challenges. For instance, at one event, they’ll be challenged to make paint with several different materials that they will later use to paint a picture. Introcaso said the challenges will be engaging and STEM-related.

More information about the Forestry and DIY programs will be available at the beginning of June.

Deadline to register and pay for Summer Fun Days is May 31, and registration should be completed in-person at the 4-H office. In addition, registration is still open for Rock Eagle summer camp. Applications are available for scholarships, and people should also visit the 4-H office for more information.

Harrision said she encourages everyone to take advantage of the Summer Fun Days. She said parents can feel comfortable as all staff and volunteers are background-checked, screened and CPR-certified.

The benefits for the kids, she said, are abundant.

“They’re not only learning social skills,” she said. “They’re learning financial skills, they’re learning cooking skills, they’re getting all of these skills that they need in life … but also it’s a chance to make new friends.”

For updates to the summer schedule, follow Baldwin County Extension-GA or visit the website at ugaextension.org/county-offices/baldwin.html.

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