Posted on August 28, 2017 at 9:17 AM by Emily Saveraid
4-H has played an important role in the lives of John and Debra Ahlers and their family. Debra was a Grant Clever Cloverette 4-H member in Plymouth County. During her 4-H years, Debra did a variety of projects including baking and sewing, but her favorite projects were the various refinishing projects, especially a horse collar and woodworking tools. John didn’t fully experience 4-H until he married Debra and the couple's four children were members in the Plymouth County 4-H program.
Before their children were old enough to join 4-H, John and Debra served as herdsmanship judges during the Plymouth County Fair. Their four children were members of the Stanton Lucky Clovers 4-H Club. They participated in a variety of project areas throughout their involvement in 4-H. Together John and Debra served as 4-H leaders for 6 years, and Debra served five additional years and still serves as an assistant leader. Their 4-H club was like a second family, and John and Debra enjoyed watching their members grow.
Giving back to the community has always been important for John and Debra. As 4-H leaders, they tried to instill the benefit of community service in their 4-H club members by working with them to organize a club citizenship project. Examples of projects include visiting nursing homes monthly, sending care packages to troops overseas, and starting a recycling program at the county fair.
In addition to serving as 4-H leaders, John and Debra have served on various boards and committees. John served as a member of the 4-H and Youth Committee and was a member of the Plymouth County Fair Board for 9 years. As a fair board member, John helped with many projects around the fairgrounds including renovating the sheep barn, assisting with building the new 4-H livestock barn, and remodeling the 4-H building. During the fair you’ll find him with his telehandler moving bleachers or setting up for the next event. John also served on the Plymouth County Farm Bureau board. Debra was a Plymouth Extension County Council member for 10 years, serving as treasurer. She currently serves on the Plymouth County Fair Queen Committee, is a Clover Kids teacher, and fills in at the extension office when needed.
John and Debra are thankful for what the Plymouth County 4-H Program has given to their family and are proud to be a part of such a phenomenal program and county fair. 4-H has been, and continues to be, an important part of their lives.