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By Paul Schattenberg

BROWNWOOD — 4-H members in grades 8-11 and adult leaders will have an opportunity to hone their leadership skills through program and activities at the Teen Leadership Retreat from Jan. 5-7 at the Texas 4-H Conference Center near Brownwood.
“The teen retreat at the Texas 4-H Conference Center provides a state level leadership experience for senior age 4-H youth,” said Cari Snider, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service youth programs coordinator, Brownwood. “Participants learn leadership skills through workshops and hands-on learning experiences.”
Snider said the retreat allows participating youth to explore new or revised projects and curricula they can implement in their respective counties. 4-H specialists, volunteers and summer staff will lead program sessions.
“This year we will divide participants into teams of yellow, red, blue and green and these teams will participate in concurrent sessions relating to team-building, leadership in the community, business and what we call the survival guide to turning 18,” she said.
The program begins with registration from 7-9 p.m. Jan. 5, followed by a general welcome and orientation, adult chaperone meeting, ice-breakers, games and more.
Jan. 6 activities start at 7:30 a.m. and include a flag ceremony, breakfast and opening assembly.
Much of the day will be devoted to the concurrent sessions, followed by outdoor activities, a Laugh Challenge, free time, a flag lowering, a team challenge and dance, ceremony and lights out. The theme for his year’s dance is Hawaiian Luau.
Jan. 7 activities begin at 7:30 a.m. with a flag ceremony and breakfast, followed by cleaning the dorms and departure around 9 a.m.
Early bird registration will be from Nov. 1-Dec. 22 and is $120 for youth and $90 for adults, which includes two nights lodging, four meals, snacks and all program supplies. Each county is requested to provide adult chaperones for the weekend. If there is no chaperone, one will be provided for an additional $90 fee.
“Any adult attending must be registered on 4-H Connect, complete the online Child Protection Training and submit a background check through 4-H connect,” Snider said.
Register online through the center’s website, http://texas4hcenter.tamu.edu.
Snider noted the 78-acre Texas 4-H Conference Center is geographically located in the center of Texas on the western side of Lake Brownwood.
“Its location and the environment in and around the center, as well as its variety of indoor and outdoor facilities, make this a perfect venue in which to meet other 4-H’ers from around the state, develop new friendships and learn skills that will serve for a lifetime,” Snider said. “And while this is a learning retreat, the main objective for the weekend will be to have fun.”

Rhea Gonzales


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