COLUMBIA CITY — The Whitley County 4-H Clubs Inc. elected five new members to serve on its board at last week’s annual meeting.

Those elected to serve on the board for the next three years include Lori Heuer, Carl Brown, Jeremiah Geiger, Gregg Palmer and April Gibson.

The board discussed its many successes and plans for next year’s Whitley County 4-H Fair.

The rodeo, which was new last year, was dubbed a “big success” and will be back as an entertainment event in 2018, on the Friday night of the fair.

Improvements to the 4-H grounds were also discussed, including new sidewalks, which were funded by a grant through the Community Foundation of Whitley County and the Whitley County Agriculture Museum. The show barn also received new steel siding on the north and south ends, improvements to the sound system and a new U.S. Flag and enclosure.

The 4-H Clubs Inc. has seen a large increase in interest for its winter storage program and building rentals in the past two years.

“We are already taking bookings for the 2019 calendar year,” said Jeff Geiger, board member.

Improvements to the well are being made during the off season. During the 2017 fair, the well stopped working, making it more difficult for 4-Hers to care for their animals.

New committees are being formed, made of up non-board members to help in three areas:

• volunteers: finding people in the community to help with all the events involved with the 4-H program, spanning from 4-H Fun Night in March to the Autumn Harvest Festival in September;

• commercial building: visiting local businesses and securing vendors for the commercial building for the 2018 fair and Autumn Harvest Festival; and

• sponsorship: make contact with local businesses to get sponsors for entertainment and livestock events, secure advertisements for the 4-H Fair Program Book and other events held.

Those interested in volunteering should contact Geiger at whitleycounty4h@gmail.com.

The 2018 Whitley County 4-H Fair is July 13-19.