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Linn 4-H celebrates 100 years with TV appearance, projects



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June 17, 2014 | 11:07 AM
LINN — “Too Awesome For Just One Century.”

Those words are emblazoned across the backs of the Linn 4-H Club’s new green T-shirts, made for the club’s 100th anniversary.

Linn 4-H group leaders Sandi Pillman and Donna Kundert along with Lisa Lasch and Donna’s husband, Dan — wore them June 10 when they met at the club’s historic marker on South Lake Shore Drive to discuss the activities and events to commemorate the momentous occasion.

It’s a statewide celebration, because Wisconsin’s 4-H program is also 100 years old. But, as the historic marker in Linn attests, the town is home to the state’s oldest 4-H club. The marker states the club was organized Oct. 30, 1914.

“I think it’s phenomenal that it’s still here, and it still meets in the same town hall,” Donna said.

The women were all smiles when they relayed accounts of meeting with people from the Madison-based television show “Discover Wisconsin” June 6 at the marker.

They said footage was filmed for an upcoming episode, including some interviews with the Linn 4-H’ers.

One of the club’s 100th anniversary activities was to redo the landscaping around the marker. “The kids actually did all the labor on that,” said Pillman.

“They did great,” said Donna. “There were bushes they had to take out because this winter was so hard on them.”

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Most of the Linn club’s 100th anniversary projects involve the Walworth County Fair.

Recently, the club made eight 4-by-8 educational signs for the horse arena at the fairgrounds in Elkhorn.

This year’s honorary fair marshals will be members of all Wisconsin 4-H clubs, said Pillman.

They will create a landscaping display near that arena, said Pillman, and it will feature an antique horse wagon.

“The Linn 4-H Club is the only 4-H club in the state that has an open horse show,” she said. “We just want to spruce it up by the horse arena.”

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They also want to put a couple of benches at the fairgrounds and one at the town of Linn Nature Park, at the corner of South Lake Shore and Maple Ridge drives.

What the Linn 4-H Club will do depends on how much money it can raise, said Pillman.

The next fundraiser is a car wash Saturday, June 28, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Woodhill Farms Nursery, N1445 Highway 120. It’s a freewill donation for the wash, said Pillman.

Two other Linn 4-H activities will occur regardless of fundraising success.

An ice cream social, free to the community and all 4-H members, is set for Aug. 8.

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“And we’re looking for alumni,” said Donna. “Any alumni out there, please contact us.”

Former 4-H’ers can contact group leaders through the website, www.linn4-hclub.com.

During the social, there will be a presentation, and past members are expected to be honored.

“We found a descendant of Thomas Bewick,” said Pillman.

Along with local community leader May Hatch, Bewick organized the club.

“We’re hoping his family will be coming down for the ice cream social.”

Sam Lasch, Linn 4-H treasurer, is organizing items to put into a time capsule, which also will be presented at the social.

“The capsule was the kids’ idea,” said Pillman. “They figure they want to open it in 25 years.”

“They figure they’ll still be here,” Donna chuckled.

Editor’s note: See future editions of the Regional News for more about the Linn 4-H Club, its 100th anniversary projects and another story about Sandi Pillman and Donna Kundert.

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