2024 Summer Spark!

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Catawba County 4-H Presents…2024 Summer Spark!

Helpful Information: Workshops are held at the Agricultural Resources Center,    1175 South Brady Ave, Newton, unless otherwise noted. Trips also depart from the Agriculture Resources Center. Payment is needed to confirm your registration. Refunds are not made unless the workshop is cancelled due to weather or low registration. 4-H’ers may use scholarship money to pay for classes of their choice. Summer scholarships are available, email donna_mull@nscu.edu for an application.

Click here to see all the fun classes & register!

Register for $50 worth of classes by May 6th and receive a free 4-H Summer Spark t-shirt!

T-Shirts are also available to be purchased for $15 each. Spaces are limited so register today! Register Here!!.

Multi-month Workshops

Discovery Days: May 31, June 7, July 18 and August 15 / Ages 11 and up / Series Cost $100
Come join us for 4 days of fun, discovery, and learning. Each day, youth will enjoy an educational and recreational activity. Times vary based on each day. You may sign up for certain days or for the whole series (whole series participants will receive a discounted rate and priority).

STEAM Carowinds Adventure– May 31 / 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. / Individual Day Cost $40
Virginia Creeper Bike Ride– June 7 / 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. / Individual Day Cost $40
Tiger World– July 18 / 9:00 a.m. to 3 p.m. / Individual Day Cost $15                       Grandfather Mountain– August 15 / 8:00 a.m. to 4 p.m. / Individual Day Cost $15

Hands to Serve: July 19, July 26, August 2 / 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. subject to change) / ages 13 and up / Instructor: Holly Ellwanger, Juntos Coordinator

Join our summer community service initiative, visiting different places and contributing to the greater good.

June Workshops

Dirt Diggers: June 4 / 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. / Ages 6- 9 / Cost $15 /Instructors: Kelli and Selah Sigmon
Would you like to learn more about plants? Discover plants in the garden, propagate your own plant, and make a tasty treat using fresh produce.

College Caravan: June 4-6, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. (approx.) / Drop off and pick up to be determined / 9th to 11th graders / Cost $50 /
Instructor: Holly Ellwanger, Juntos Coordinator
Finding the right college can be a challenge, but also exciting. Join Juntos 4-H for our summer College Caravan. We will learn more about the college selection process and tour a few schools while we are at it.

Bird Adventure: June 5 / 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. / Ages 9 and up / Drop off and pick up at Riverbend Park / Cost $10 / Instructor: Emily Kanupp Discover the wonders of nature as you embark on a fun-filled hike. We will be learning about local bird species, how to identify them, and doing some bird watching.

Basic Ballet: June 6 / 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. / Ages 7 to 11 / Cost $10 /Instructors: Sylvia and Lupita Ortiz
Unleash your grace and elegance with basic ballet. Learn to stretch, leap and dance like a prima ballerina.

Teen Cooking Challenge: June 10 / 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. / Ages 13- 18 / Cost $20 / Instructors: Kelli Sigmon and Sue Stulpin
Teens are you ready for a cooking challenge? Compete as teams to create a healthy meal. As a team, you will plan your meal, shop for your ingredients, prepare your meal, and present your meal to the judges.

Civic Spark: June 11 – 13 / 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. / Ages 11 and up / Cost$50 / We will take a trip to Greensboro and Cherokee, class hours will be extended to accommodate travel time.
Increase your community involvement by joining our three day Civic Spark workshop. We will be visiting The International Civil Rights Center and Museum in Greensboro and the Museum of the Cherokee People in Cherokee, NC. Participants will be exposed to different nationalities, cultures and customs. 4-H’ers will also work and help design our Kids Voting program for Catawba County.

4-H Chopped: June 17 / 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. / Ages 9-12 / Cost $20 /Instructors: Kelli Sigmon, Sue Stulpin and 4-H Teen Cooks Club Calling all aspiring chefs! Come join us for a friendly cooking competition. Compete as teams in a 4-H version of “Chopped,” complete with a mystery ingredient that you will have to use in your dish.

Arbor Trekkers: June 19 / 9:00 a.m. – 12 p.m. / Ages 9 and up / Drop off and pick up at Baker’s Mountain Park / Cost $10 / Instructor: Emily Kanupp Join us for a unique hiking experience that combines adventure with tree exploration. We will be doing fun tree activities and learning about local tree species.

The Mystery of the Underground: June 20 / 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. / Ages 11 and up / Cost: $10 / Instructor: Isaac Carter
Do you like people? Are you observant? Think you can solve a mystery? Then come discover who the culprit is as you listen to the Storyteller and talk amongst yourselves to solve the mystery of the Underground.

Art Exploration: June 21 / 10:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. / Ages 11 and up /
Cost $40 / Instructors: Mary Doughty and Isaac Carter
Learn the basics of watercolors and paint pouring. Youth will explore how to manipulate watercolors and create beautiful works of art. Use paint pouring to create your own one of a kind masterpiece and learn different techniques and textures within your own art.

Mini Society: June 24 – 28 / 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. / Ages 9 to 13 / Cost $50 /Instructors: Donna Mull, Catawba County 4-H Agent and Christie German, Gaston County 4-H Agent
Youth will create their own Mini-Society. You will have the chance to name your town, create a system for earning money, design your money, apply for jobs, and maybe even be mayor. Learn economic and business basics as you create a business and buy and sell with other Mini Society citizens (no outside selling allowed). The series ends with an auction and youth-only market designed by mini-society participants.

July Workshops

Farm to Table: July 9 – 11 / 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. / Ages 9 and up / Cost $65 /Instructor: April Vigardt, Local Foods Agent
Begin the day with a visit to a nearby farm and/or farmers market and learn how things grow. Then return to the Extension office for kitchen time. 4-H’ers will learn how to turn farm produce into yummy new recipes.

Chesscalibur: July 15 / 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. / Ages 9 and up / Cost $20 /Instructor: Hunter Sherman
With Excalibur in hand, King Arthur defeated 400 enemies in battle. By learning the basics, this class will be your first step to greatness on the chess board.

Animal Science: July 16 – July 17 / 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. / Ages 10 and up / Cost $50 / Instructor: Carson Johnson, Livestock Area Agent
Embark on a journey with us to discover the fascinating world of animals by visiting various farms and facilities. Through observations, interactions, and lessons, we will deepen our knowledge of animal science.

Sew Much Fun: July 24 / 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. / Ages 9 and up / Cost $30 /Instructor: Joy Everett
Learn how to operate a sewing machine and the basics of sewing. 4-H’ers will work on a sewing project and be able to take it home.

Aerospace Adventure: July 30 – August 1 / 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. / Ages 12 and up / Cost $50 / Instructor: Tom Dyson
We will be placing rocket orders and 4-H’ers must reserve their spot by June 24th.
Join our journey of discovery into the realm of flight. Build and launch a rocket while learning about aerodynamics. Enrich your understanding as we visit an aviation museum.

August Workshops

Mighty Pollinators: August 5, August 8, and August 9 / 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. / Ages 9 and up / Cost $10 / Instructors: Catawba County Beekeepers Association. Get up close and personal with the miraculous world of pollinators! Suit up like a real beekeeper to get an in-depth look inside a honey bee hive.

STEM Exploration: August 6/ 9 a.m. to 12 p.m./ Ages 6 to 10 / Cost $10 /Instructors: Selah Sigmon and Lupita Ortiz
Join us for a day filled with discovery and fun! Let your creative side run free as we make some music with our Makey-Makey kits. Students will explore STEAM activities and challenges.

Watercolor Retreat: August 7 / 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. / Ages 9 and up / Cost $20 /  Instructor: Emily Kanupp
Join us on a journey of discovery as we use watercolors to create stunning works of art inspired by the beauty of nature.

Adulting 101: August 12 – August 13 / 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. / Ages 11 and up /Cost $25 / Donna Mull, Catawba County 4-H Agent and Christie German, Gaston County 4-H Agent
Adulting is being able to do grown-up things and handle life’s responsibilities. Learn basic life skills such as financial literacy, sewing, meal planning, cooking, and much more to figure out how to live successfully in todays world.


Registration for 4-H Summer Spark is a 2 part process. You will register each youth individually through the google form and all youth must be enrolled in 4-H Online to participate in 4-H Summer Spark. Registration is not confirmed until payment is received. Payment: You may choose to pay online or by check at the Cooperative Extension Office. We will provide the online payment link following your registration.

If you run into an issue with registration, please contact us and we will help you. How to enroll on 4-H Online:

  • You will need to create a family profile and add each child under that profile.
  • Please add them as a member and not as a participant.
  • Choose Catawba County even if you live in another county because we are only able to see Catawba County enrollments.
  • When enrolling your child, it will ask you to choose a club, choose “Summer Spark-Member at Large” as the club if you are not affiliated with a specific 4-H Club already.
  • Choose a project subject area that relates to your focus in 4-H or choose 4-H

Exploring the Treasures, if you are not affiliated with a club and a more specific project area associated with your summer involvement. Catawba County 4-H offers many fun learning opportunities throughout the year that are economical and life skill building through our various clubs. For a list of clubs visit our website.