Tips for planning your next 4-H event

Consider these tips to make event planning easy as you discover some resources to help keep your event on track.

There are just certain things about being a 4-H staff person or volunteer that can be overwhelming! Event planning can be one of those tasks. In 4-H we tend to do a lot of planning: planning projects for the 4-H program year, planning for fundraising activities, planning for community service projects and, of course, planning for 4-H events.

4-H event planning doesn’t need to be overwhelming or cumbersome. To make 4-H event planning easy, you can start by following these tips:

Stay organized
Dedicate a binder, notebook or folder to the event you’re planning. You can keep notes of places or people you have contacted, with the date you talked to them or left them a message.

Remember the goal
Know why you are holding an event. In other words, make sure you know your goals or objectives. Why are you holding this event? What do you hope event attendees will get out of it?

Create a committee
Remember that whether you’re thinking about Essential Elements of 4-H Youth Development or the Michigan 4-H Guiding Principles, youth involved in 4-H need to be engaged in their own learning. Don’t forget to ask them to be involved in event planning. After all, they can learn how to hold a successful event by learning from you!

Let your committee know what you need. Delegating tasks to others can be difficult to do. Even if the task is seemingly small, engaging the entire committee in the event will help them to feel like they are a part of something larger – the event objective!

Stay on task
There are several resources available to help you plan. These are a few examples:

Evaluate the event
Talk to both your event committee and a few individuals who attended. Discover what went well and what can be changed for next time. What happened that you didn’t plan for?

Proper event planning can help to make the 4-H event an enjoyable experience for everyone involved. Don’t forget that you’re not alone in 4-H. There are staff, volunteers, youth, parents and families who are willing to help create events that meet the goals or objectives of the event.

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