The fair theme of “4-H … Generations of Farm Fresh Family Fun” and the logo were unveiled this evening (Sept. 14) by 2017 Fair Board President Jill Garris, who explained her personal reasons for choosing the unique identity for the next fair.
“My family’s 4-H involvement truly does span the generations,” she said. Her parents, Ralph and Darlene Leatherman, were 10-year 4-H members, and in 2009 the family celebrated 80 consecutive years of 4-H involvement. Garris and her siblings, as well as her nieces and nephew were all 10-year 4-H members.
“This logo is very much a representation of what helped form my identity. Having grown up on an 80-acre farm in Millersburg, we raised livestock and grew crops. My father always enjoyed having horses on the farm and was a member of the first Elkhart County 4-H Saddle Club advisory board in the 1950s,” she explained.
“The other animals in the design signify the 4-H livestock clubs I was active in: poultry, beef, sheep and swine. The red cardinal perched on the corn stalk is in memory of my mother, who enjoyed watching them and collecting cardinal figurines. The four generations pictured represent my grandfather, myself and my oldest niece,” she continued.
“Agriculture and 4-H helped shape our lives and create wonderful opportunities as well as cherished lifelong memories of working, playing and laughing together,” she concluded, noting that her family was only one of many who have benefitted from 4-H in Elkhart County.
The 2017 Elkhart County 4-H Fair will be July 21-29.