Hay! The Christian County 4-H is rolling out a family-friendly fundraiser this fall with its inaugural Bale Trail.
The local 4-H is partnering with Hopkinsville-Christian County Convention and Visitors Bureau for this event.
“We’re very excited about it,” said Kaitlyne Metsker, Christian County 4-H Extension agent. “It’s something that I’ve thought about the last couple of years. We’re making it happen this year.”
Metsker said there are two levels of sponsorship for the bale trail. To enter the Clover Level, the cost is $100 per entry. This fee includes the name of the entrant on the map and recognition on social media.
Emerald level entries are $250, which includes the entrant’s name/logo listed on map, recognition on social media, a logo sign to accompany the display and recognition on event promotions.
Contest categories are small, which includes one or two round bales, and large, which is three or more round bales.
“Participants can choose between the level they want to sponsor and compete in and also the size category,” Metsker said.
Although there is not a theme for the bale entries, Metsker said displays must be family friendly.
“Let your creative juices flow. Whatever you want to do,” she said.
All proceeds will go to Christian County 4-H. Currently, the organization is undergoing new enrollment, but last year the group had about 250 members from kindergarten to age 18, Metsker said.
“It will provide scholarships for camp, our teen conferences and that type of thing,” she said.
Metsker said all bale displays must be set up by Oct. 16 to be judged.
First and second places will be awarded in each category for each sponsorship level. Judging of entries will take place Oct. 16 by a committee of judges.
“We’re going to pull individuals from all over to judge those,” Metsker said. “The biggest thing is creativity. Everybody’s got the same canvas to work with — round bales. We really want to see some awesome displays out there.
Winners will receive a trophy that is being sponsored and a sign indicating their achievement.
All bale displays will be listed on a map which will be available by mid-month at the extension office and on the Visit Hopkinsville app.
“The community can have a guided map to go visit those too,” Metsker said.
A People’s Choice Award will also go to the display with the most “likes” on Facebook. Voting will take place Oct. 16-29.
“We’re giving individuals an opportunity to have a say in a winner, as well,” Metsker said. “The day that we judge entries, we’re going to take photos of them and post them on our Facebook page.”
The People’s Choice winner will be revealed Oct. 30. They will receive a plaque or trophy and a goodie bag.
Entry forms are available now on the Christian County 4-H Facebook page or interested parties may call 270-886-6328 to request a form.
Forms should be mailed or returned with payment to Christian County Cooperative Extension Office, 2850 Pembroke Road, Hopkinsville, KY 42220 by Oct. 7. Checks may be made payable to Christian County 4-H Council.
“We’re hoping that this is something we can continue for years to come,” Metsker said.