top of page

Catching up with Kanabec County's Nikki Priebe during National 4-H Week

Updated: Oct 6, 2023

Nikki Priebe can't remember a time when 4-H wasn't part of her life.

"I grew up in Kanabec County 4-H," Priebe said. "I did the horse project, and I was part of the canter club from the time I was a Cloverbud all the way up through one year past graduation from high school, which is as long as you can be in 4-H."

Priebe's 4-H career has spanned from her Cloverbud days to, as of January, becoming the Kanabec County Extension Educator for 4-H Youth Development.

In the spirit of National 4-H Week, which extends through Saturday, Oct. 7, she shared some highlights from her first year, fittingly for a previous member of the canter club, at the reins.

"It's been a learning experience," Priebe said with a laugh. "I loved the fair, I love getting to do all the things with the clubs and the projects."

The Kanabec County 4-H program is continuing to grow following a downturn at the height of the pandemic. According to Priebe, 2022 saw 261 youth members and 59 adult volunteers involved in the program.

"We used to have a very large program in the county," Priebe explained. "We're really excited to kind of have numbers back to where they were before."

Priebe said that the 4-H program's goal is a simple one: To create leaders.

"That's really a big part of what the clubs do," she said.

Reflecting on this summer, Priebe said the 4-H program’s involvement at the Kanabec County Fair has been a high watermark.

“It made me really proud to see all of our 4-H’ers there working hard every single day, taking care of their animals, helping other youth who were new this year,” Priebe said.

And it’s not just a robust fair presence that Priebe gets to brag about.

Kanabec County 4-H’s shooting sports team was the third largest contingent at the state competition this year, trailing only Anoka and Washington. Two Kanabec County 4-H representatives were also inducted into the Minnesota Shooting Sports Hall of Fame.

The county’s 4-H program also had a strong showing at the state dog show, behind only Anoka in number of participants.

“It’s just really exciting to see Kanabec represented so well,” Priebe said.

A full-calendar summer has segued into a busy fall for Priebe.

“It’s always something new, for sure,” she said. “I thought after the fair I might get a little bit of a break, but then we were getting into the state fair, state horse show, state dog show, state shoot, northeast livestock show, so September was very busy.”

October marks the first month for enrollment for the new 4H year.

Kanabec County’s 4H afterschool program also began this week. It’s geared toward students from kindergarten through sixth grade, and held at the Mora public library on Wednesdays.

National 4-H week continues through Oct. 7.

33 views0 comments


bottom of page