Iowa 4-H Foundation

Posted on August 22, 2022 at 11:50 AM by Cade Cameron

Alvin SmidstraAlvin Smidstra's interest in 4-H began about the time his son started attending 4-H. Alvin was a 4-H leader for six years in the 1990s. He served on the 4-H youth committee for six years and then started helping with the 4-H and FFA dairy show at the Lyon County Fair in 1991. His dedication to the 4-H program brought him to the fair board in 1999. The same year he took on the job of dairy superintendent at the Lyon County Fair. Alvin's commitment to the Lyon County 4-H youth drove him to accept more responsibility at the Lyon County Fair.

Alvin's dedication to the Lyon County Fair's 4-H dairy program has seen two generations of dairy exhibitors. Through his efforts, a new state-of-the-art show ring was constructed. 4-H exhibitors, animals and viewers are protected from weather elements in this fine arena. Alvin has stated that the 4-H exhibitors and members are always on his mind, "The fair is for the kids. We need to invest in 4-H members and exhibitors."

Alvin is always there to fill the need when no one else is available to help. He can always be counted on to get the job done. He filled the positions of fair manager, vice president, dairy superintendent, and overall livestock superintendent, organized and ran the pedal pull competition and took care of after-hour repairs at the fairgrounds. If something needed to be done, you could count on Alvin's dedication and commitment to the kids to see to it that it was taken care of as soon as possible.

Fundraising is a major responsibility for a fair board member. Alvin took on the responsibility to run the figure 8 races at the fairgrounds, both as a fair event and additional dates outside of the fair, as a way to help raise money for 4-H ribbons for the kids and to continue making repairs and improvements at the fairgrounds. He also took on the task of organizing the winter storage at the fairgrounds. This also brought in extra funds for the fair board.

Alvin's activities outside of 4-H and fair include the Christian Reformed Church and Cadet youth leader for 2nd-8th grade boys for 33 years. He has been on many improvement committees and served as a deacon in his church. He also served on the local Community Affairs Corporation for 6 years, serving as president for three of those years.

Categories: 2022, Lyon

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