National 4-H Conference (Continued from National 4-H Camp since 1959)

Over 300 delegates and chaperones from 47 Land Grant Universities, Puerto Rico and Canada are attending the 2015 National 4-H Conference from April 11th to16th, at the National 4-H Youth Conference Center. This is the 85th gathering of 4-H’ers in the nation’s capital since National 4-H Camp began in 1927.

The following story is from the National Compendium of 4-H Promotion and Visibility on the National 4-H History Website at http://4-HHistory.com/?h=4-H_Promotion

When National 4-H Camp was replaced by National 4-H Conference and moved to the National 4-H Center in 1959, definitely one thing changed: the living conditions were  considerably better! Historically, one of the overriding goals of creating a national “home” for 4-H in the nation’s capital was to accommodate National 4-H Conference. Mac McGarry, host of the popular high school quiz show “It’s Academic” hosted the first National 4-H Conference Clover Bowl. Participants answered questions about the history of the Constitution, 4-H, and of Washington, D.C. (Spring, 1987, National 4-H Council Quarterly) National 4-H Conference has remained a strong national 4-H event for nearly 60 years, and continues today, with the programs and experiences focused heavily on leadership and citizenship and providing “growth” experiences for the delegates. While some releases, delegate interviews and media coverage may take place, National 4-H Conference has never been a primary promotion or visibility event, per se.

Mac McGarry, host of the popular high school quiz show "It's Academic" hosted the first National 4-H Conference Clover Bowl. Participants answered questions about the history of the Constitution, 4-H, and of Washington, D.C. (Spring, 1987, National 4-H Council Quarterly)Mac McGarry, host of the popular high school quiz show “It’s Academic” hosted the first National 4-H Conference Clover Bowl. Participants answered questions about the history of the Constitution, 4-H, and of Washington, D.C. (Spring, 1987, National 4-H Council Quarterly)

The major exception to this is that often, through the years, the participating speakers and workshop presenters at National 4-H Conference have created enough promotion and visibility to merit classifying this event as a major promotion event. Traditionally, Conference planners often were not shy in asking the “top resources of Washington” to be on the Conference program. And, if their schedules allowed, they usually were happy to do
so. This would include U.S. Congressmen and women, Senators, Supreme Court Justices, national media representatives and leadership from the various departments of government, national organizations headquartered in Washington, and representatives from foreign embassies.


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