Franklin County 4-H students attend Overton Farm leadership retreat
Eight Franklin County students took part in a Northwest Alabama 4-H one-day summer leadership retreat July 12 at The Venue at Overton Farm, located at 2300 Overton Farm Road in Hodges, Ala.
The event was free, and lunch was provided. They spent the day engaged in activities designed to build friendships and improve leadership skills while participating in a variety of fun activities, including plenty of time outdoors, some of it on the lake.
Kyle Wood (East Franklin), Xander Cantrell (Belgreen), Cecilia Rowbottom (Vina), Shaler Stone (Russellville), Melodie Riley (Phil Campbell), Jayden Laymen (Phil Campbell), John Riley Jr. (Phil Campbell) and Alyssa Oliver (Red Bay) are among the estimated 62 youths taking part in the event from across 10 counties.
It’s an experience that brought back a lot of good memories for Austin Blankenship, Franklin County’s Regional 4-H Extension Agent.
“Roughly two decades ago when I was in the third grade, I remember a school camping trip we took to Bear Creek Education Center (the name of the overall center at the time), and it’s one of the best field trips I remember from my early school years,” Blankenship explained.
“I’m so glad to see Overton Farm and the rest of the center reopened and beginning to offer educational opportunities again, and I look forward to working with them in the future. This event was a soft opening for that, and it went very well,” he added.
Blankenship said the purpose of the event was so the student 4-H ambassadors, youth council members and future youth council members could cross county lines “to meet one another, enjoy a fun day together and learn about the center, TVA and the BCDA,” also with the hope of inspiring future career aspirations.
The facility hosted a Farm to Fork farm tour and dinner event July 20.