Backyard Belles and Boys canoe
By Avery McGuire
The Backyard Belles and Boys 4-H Club met on Saturday, June 15 at Birch Bark Canoe Livery. After canoeing, we had a working meeting at the home of Andrew and Sarah Lewis. Everyone brought a covered dish and we cooked out before practicing for skill-a-thons and working on project books. The next meeting will be on Sunday, July 31 at 7 p.m. at the Champaign County Fairgrounds. We will be having pizza and decorating the barns for fair.
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Urbana FFA leaders attend conference
By Kirstin Lewis
Urbana FFA Vice President
Thousands of FFA members from throughout the country converged on Washington D.C., this summer to evaluate their personal skills and interests, develop leadership talent and create service plans that will make a difference in their communities.
More than 2,300 students registered for the 2017 Washington Leadership Conference, the second-largest student experience that the National FFA Organization hosts each year. Created in 1969 and held annually, the conference was held at the Omni Shoreham Hotel.
FFA members can attend the conference during one of seven weeks through July 29. The Urbana FFA chapter was represented by Ashlyn Dunn and Kirstin Lewis, during week 5 of the conference. They spent the week under the guidance of professionals, counselors and FFA staff. In workshops, seminars, and smalls groups, members focused on identifying and developing their personal strengths and goals while undergoing comprehensive leadership training that will help them guide their local FFA chapters. The capstone of the event was a civic engagement activity where participants applied what they had learned to a hands-on activity.
Members also analyzed needs of their own communities, developing wide-range and high-impact community service initiatives and implementing their plans with help of their FFA chapters upon return home. Urbana FFA members in recent years have brought home the idea of Meals of Hope to our community. Last year the members made it a county wide event, and packed 76,000 meals for the community.
FFA members also experienced the history of the nation’s capital and toured landmarks such as the Washington Monument, War Memorial, the National Mall, Arlington National Cemetery and the U.S. capital, among others. Members also had an opportunity to participate in congressional visits during the week.
The 2017 Washington Leadership Conference was sponsored by title sponsors CSX, Monsanto, Farm Credit and weekly sponsor Valent.