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Join Mason County 4-H

Program Contact: Heather Doran, 4-H Program Coordinator
(360) 427-9670 Ext. 681 •

Frequently Asked Questions:

What is 4-H?

4-H is America’s largest youth development organization—empowering nearly six million young people around the world, 4-H type clubs now exist in at least 82 countries.

4-H is everywhere–in cities, suburbs, small towns, and rural communities.


The 4-H Mission: 4-H empowers youth to reach their full potential, working and learning in partnership with caring adults.

Vision: Washington State University 4-H Youth Development is developing young people to become productive citizens who are engaged in positive change, meeting the needs of a diverse and changing society.

The 4-H Approach: “LEARN BY DOING” 4-H uses an experiential learning model, which means we “learn by doing” through hands-on experiences, whether it’s learning to build a robot, care for a horse, or do great photography.

Who can join 4-H?

4-H is open to all youth who have reached their 5th birthday (on or before October 1st of the current 4-H year) through those who have not reached their 19th birthday (on or before October 1st of the current 4-H year). The 4-H year runs October 1 to September 30.

There are four age groups in 4-H:

  • Cloverbud: ages 5-7
  • Junior: ages 8-10
  • Intermediate: ages 11-13
  • Senior: ages 14 to 19

Youth must be at least 8 years of age on October 1 to participate hands-on with large animals and in shooting sports.

Adults 18+ can apply to volunteer with us.

When can I join 4-H?

The 4-H year runs from October 1st to September 30th annually. Mason County 4-H is always welcoming new clubs, volunteers and members – year round!

To participate in the Grays Harbor County Fair, the enrollment deadline is April 1 of the current year. Returning members must re-enroll annually by December 1.


How much does it cost?

The Washington State University State 4-H Fee is $25 per youth, due in October of each year. Mason County 4-H does not have any additional fee.

Some clubs may have additional fees, or fundraising opportunities, to cover the cost of projects, please check with the club for more information.

Member fee scholarships are available, no youth will be denied access to 4-H programs due to their ability to pay. Please fill out this scholarship request form.

How do I get started?

The first step is to find a club you are interested in joining. Look at the projects, meeting location and times to determine a good fit. The active clubs in Mason County can be found on the join 4-H page located here: Current Club List

Please contact the club leader and they can tell you the club meeting time, location, required attendance and the parent volunteer requirements. They will be able to answer any of your questions about joining their club.

Next, attend a club meeting to see if it is a good fit for you and your youth member. If it is not a good fit, you are welcome to try another club!

Finally, enroll in 4-H online and participate as a 4-H member!

Youth members and adult volunteers can enroll online at:

What projects can I participate in?

In 4-H youth get to decide what project to participate in. Each club will decide together which projects they will offer each year. Some of the active projects in Mason County are:

  • Animals: rabbit, poultry, dog, goat, horseless horse, sheep, alpaca
  • Shooting Sports: archery
  • Arts: sewing, photography, creative arts
  • Sciences: STEM, robotics, coding, electronics, drones

Check the club list for a full list of active clubs and their projects.

Do I have to have animals or live on a farm?

Nope! 4-H members can explore any subject area that interests them! Project areas include, but are not limited to: Expressive Arts, Family Living, Environmental Stewardship, Plant Sciences, Animal Sciences, Engineering & Technology and more!

Each 4-H member selects at least one project, that sparks their interest. A project is what the subject the member decides to learn about, make, or raise. Members choose projects that fit into their family, club, and community.

4-H members can change their projects each year, depending on what interests them most!

I don't see a club I'm interested in, what now?

We are always excited to help start new clubs with willing volunteers. Contact the Mason County 4-H Program Coordinator to help you get started.

The first step, is to become a certified 4-H volunteer. We can help you by; deciding on projects and a club name, making flyers if you need them, and providing a 4-H Club Kit that includes materials and information you need to be successful.

A club is a group of 5 of more youth from 3 different families, led by a certified 4-H adult volunteer – if you don’t have that many right away, that’s okay! We are here to help you every step of the way.

4-H clubs are run by volunteers. Any community member is welcome to become a certified volunteer and start a new club.  Clubs may be a single-project club, where the group only participates in one project area (like goats, or baking) or multi-project club, where the club offers multiple project areas with multiple adult volunteers to support them. 

How do I become a volunteer?

Potential volunteers will need to create a profile in 4-H Online, enroll, complete a volunteer application packet, and required training. After this is done the 4-H Program Coordinator will schedule a time to meet (phone, in person or zoom) and answer your questions to help you get started!

For a detailed description of the process, the application packet, training and links – check out our volunteer page.

Learn more about Joining Mason County 4-H

Mason County 4-H has approximately 8 active 4-H clubs, and are looking to start more. It is important to find a club that is the right fit for your family. Review the CURRENT CLUB LIST and contact club leader’s who offer projects in your interest area and let them know that you are interested in joining their club. The club leader will provide information on their club structure i.e. meeting schedules, service projects, activities and more. This is the time to ask your questions! If you need assistance with finding a club, contact the 4-H Program Coordinator for assistance. We are happy to help you get started on your 4-H journey!

In addition to the 4-H Club you choose to join, 4-H members also have the opportunity to participate in many other activities to enrich their 4-H experience, such as;

Public Presentations

4-H members choose a subject and prepare a presentation which is presented to others. Members learn important public speaking and communication skills. Consider presenting your topic at the Grays Harbor County Fair!

Record Keeping

4-H members keep a written record of what they have done during the 4-H year. Keeping records helps members evaluate their learning and develop business sense. 4-H members who complete their project record book for the year are eligible to receive their project pin at the year end celebration.

Community Service Projects

4-H Clubs plan and execute community service projects. 4-H clubs often choose projects in conservation, beautification, safety, or health. We encourage you to find a need in our community and create a positive impact.

County Contests and Events

Contests and events give 4-H members an opportunity to showcase their projects and what they have learned throughout the year. With the elimination of the Mason Area Fair 4-H in 2015 Mason County 4-H has been able to partner with the Grays Harbor County 4-H program to provide Mason County 4-H members an opportunity to participate in the Grays Harbor County Fair which is held in August each year. This is a place where members are able to showcase learning, still life projects, record books, Public Presentations and share their 4-H pride with the community!

4-H Camps and Conferences

A variety of daytime and overnight experiences are available to choose from for both younger members and teens. Camps and conferences offer opportunities for education, leadership and personal growth. 4-H members will have the first chance to register for our annual overnight summer camp at Panhandle Lake 4-H camp in July!