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Beaver Dam 4-H members learn new skills

Gloria Hafemeister

BEAVER DAM – One person invented the lightbulb, one person created the automobile assembly line and one person came up with a vaccine for polio. Everything that has been invented or created started as one person's idea.

Phil Heinle, a former 4-H member and now an independent Quality Consultant, shared his message of inspiration with 160 4-H members and their families in Dodge County who took part in the Family learning day at Moraine Park Technical College in Beaver Dam on April 22.

“One person can make a difference,” says Phil Heinle in his address to 160 Dodge County 4-H members and their families April 22 during the Family Learning Day in Beaver Dam.

He challenged the youth to think about ideas they have and about what difference they made last year, what difference they plan to make this year and about the possibilities for making a difference in their lifetime.

He encouraged them in their 4-H involvement and said as club members they can also make a difference as they learn new skills, help others learn skills, and take advantage of a variety of activities that inspire them.

Heinle grew up in Janesville and was a 4-H member until he was 18. He took electricity and horse and pony projects but he says a real benefit to 4-H involvement was competing in speaking, demonstrations and drama contests.

As a 4-H member he was recognized for contributions at the local, state and national level. All of those experiences helped him when he went to the University of Wisconsin where he earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees. He has been an independent quality consultant for over 30 years.

4-H members enjoyed the hands-on opportunities in the cheesemaking class that was a part of Dodge County’s Family Learning Day activities in Beaver Dam on April 22.

In all, 36 different classes were offered to the 4-H members during the day-long event.  Youth enrolled in livestock projects learned about preparing animals for the fair. Science and craft projects were among the popular choices. One popular class was a hands-on cheesemaking class, led by Charles Crave, Waterloo.

Ellen Bohn, Dodge County UW-Extension 4-H Program Assistant, said the Family Learning Day provides an opportunity for youth to participate in a variety of activities, learning new skills, making new items and developing their 4-H projects.

Holding the event at the local technical college provided an opportunity for the youth to also learn about the opportunities for learning offered through technical schools and to become more familiar with the school right in their own county.