4-H Helps Out! Produce for RMH

September 21, 2023

Thank you to the members of Iowa 4-H who celebrated record-breaking participation of over 6,000 entries in 4-H livestock and horticulture entries during the 2023 Iowa State Fair!

The event’s highlight was the increase in beef and poultry project areas. The 4-H Beef Show, held on Aug. 15 and 16, showcased 693 animals. In addition, the 4-H Poultry Show on Aug. 11 featured 352 animals.

The horticulture projects were on display from Aug. 12 through Aug. 14. “While some exhibitors come back to take their vegetables home for personal use, many of the 4-H youth want to share their product with the families staying at the Ronald McDonald House,” said Earl McAlexander, Iowa 4-H youth extension specialist. “This gives the families some fresh food in addition to the daily meals prepared for the evening mealtime.”

Earl McAlexander and his wife, Kerri McAlexander, a family who has stayed at our Ronald McDonald House near Blank Children's Hospital, help with the 4-H Horticulture Show at the Iowa State Fair. Each year, they collect the vegetables at the show’s end that 4-H youth do not want to take home and donate them to the Ronald McDonald House of Des Moines. This year, the produce was over 100 pounds.

“This donation of fresh produce is one of the ways 4-H youth give their hands to larger service by giving back to help those in their communities,” McAlexander said.