COOPERSTOWN — The Otsego County Board of Representatives heard a special presentation from local 4-H club members as part of the board’s monthly meeting Wednesday, Oct. 2, at 197 Main St. in Cooperstown. 

As part of its consent agenda, the board unanimously approved a resolution making Sunday, Oct. 6, to Saturday, Oct. 12, 4-H week in Otsego County. 

Patti Zellmer, 4-H program leader for Otsego County, introduced the board to student members Hanna Austin, 13, Tanner Griffin, 13, and Hazel Lippitt, 16, all from Cooperstown Central School, and volunteers John and Beth Bartlett. 

The group gave out 4-H literature to the representatives, including Board Chair Dave Bliss, a 4-H alumnus at Cooperstown. 

Austin told the board about her experience with bees. 

“Honeybees are very important, because without them we would face a crisis,” she said.

Austin said she was at a beekeeping event when she noticed she was one of the few young people there. Almost all of the beekeepers were old, she said. 

“I realized some young people would have to take over,” she said.  

Zellmer said a local 4-H club was a pioneer in starting a beekeeping unit, thanks to Austin.

“When people think about 4-H, they think we are cows and cooking,” Zellmer said. “We do a lot more.” 

Zellmer said Otsego County 4-H has 300 student participants and 125 volunteers. 

“We thank you for being supportive of 4-H,” she said.  

Zellmer and the Bartletts all said they could see the growth of the students from a year of 4-H activities. 

“It really challenged them and expanded their abilities,” John said. “I really enjoyed working with the young people, too.” 

Email otsego@cornell.edu or go to Otsego County 4-H for more information. 

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