Learn by Doing; That is the 4-H slogan. Loaves of bread, collections of insects, creative 4-H clover displays, and handmade clothing garments and toolboxes line the display stands in the Cecil Underwood Youth Building at the State Fair of West Virginia as evidence of 4-H members’ hard work throughout the past year. People attending the State Fair of West Virginia can view these blue-ribbon 4-H project exhibits from August 12 through 21, 2021. Additionally, there are hundreds of exhibits online in the virtual state 4-H exhibit.
“I love to see the excitement on a 4-H members’ face when they find their exhibit on display,” says Jenny Murray, Extension Specialist for 4-H Curriculum. “In many cases, the entire family is involved in the 4-H project work. Proud parents and grandparents share stories with us about how they spent time together, learning and engaging in the 4-H activities.”
For 4-H projects to earn a spot at the State Fair, the youth had to earn a blue ribbon at the county level. All exhibits earn a blue ribbon from the State Fair, but a few exhibits are pulled as Best of Show. This year’s Best of Show winners are:
- Cade Blackshire, Mason County, West Virginia Studies (Know Your State)
- Malia Cooper, Randolph County, Woodworking (Measuring Up)
- Breanna Davis, Mineral County, Sheep (Rams, Lambs & Ewe)
- Melody Jarrell, Braxton County, Trees (Tree Identification)
- Harleigh Oswood, Mineral County, Meat Goats (Growing with Meat Goats)
- Josie Parsley, Wayne County, Birds (Birds)
- Ross Pownell, Pendleton County, Trapping (Trapping)
- Vivian Pownell, Pendleton County, Entrepreneurship (Be the “E”)
- Luke Thomas, Mason County, West Virginia Studies (Know Your State)
- Gage Willis, Monongalia County, 4-H (This is 4-H)
- Carter Wolfe, Greenbrier County, Poultry (Scratching the Surface)
In addition to the 4-H project work, the State Fair 4-H exhibit includes other state-level 4-H competitions – poster contest, photo exhibition, writing exhibition, and presentation contest. In total, the 2021 State Fair 4-H exhibit boasts 2,436 entries.
To learn more about the 4-H program in your county, visit
or contact your local office of the WVU Extension Service. The new 4-H year begins
on October 1, 2021.