Welcome to Hennepin County
Hennepin County partners with Extension to deliver practical education and research you can use at home, at work and in your community.
What is 4-H?
4-H is an out-of-school, hands-on learning program for people grades Kindergarten through one year past high school. Youth gather as 4-H clubs, learning groups, afterschool, programs and camps, and explore topics (also called projects) that are interesting to them. 4-H groups are facilitated by youth leaders and caring adults. 4-H clubs are groups of youth who want to learn together and meet in every part of Minnesota.
The 4-H year is October 1 through September 30.
What can I do in 4-H?
The sky’s the limit! 4-H offers learning experiences in science, photography, agriculture, healthy living, civic engagement, and much more. We have one-day events, school-year groups, seasonal cohorts, and everything in between. There are many ways to try 4-H.
Request information on 4-H
View the Hennepin County 4-H Program Catalog to connect with a club leader and learn more about what's going on in 4-H in our County.
“I pledge my Head to clearer thinking, my Heart to greater loyalty, my Hands to larger service, and my Health to better living, for my family, my club, my community, my country, and my world.”
What are the four H's of 4-H?
- Head signifies clearer thinking of a greater importance in life.
- Heart signifies greater loyalty to others and the greater good.
- Hands signifies larger service to the community.
- Health signifies better living through meeting personal needs
Read more on the 4 H’s from Michigan State University.
4-H is a broad and diverse community organization with plenty of history and opportunities. Here in Hennepin County, we have a variety of Community Clubs (community-based), Project Clubs (interest-based), and Partner Clubs (organizationally-based). Youth can also participate in 4-H programs, both locally and across Minnesota. Throughout the 4-H year, we also offer a variety of county-wide programs and activities, as well as additional leadership opportunities for older youth. In Hennepin 4-H, there is something for everyone!
- 4-H member - For youth in grades K through one year past high school
- County 4-H Ambassador - for youth in grades 6th and up
Find a 4-H event in Minnesota.
There are also many ways adults (anyone age 18+) can support youth learning and leading in 4-H. Visit the Volunteering with 4-H page to learn more about how volunteers positively impact youth and community
Hennepin County 4-H is actively recruiting adult volunteer positions (ages 18+) to join our program’s leadership team for the 2023-24 year, which starts October 2023. One-time, short-term, and year-round positions available.
- To inquire and apply, please complete the Hennepin County 4-H Volunteer Interest Form (z.umn.edu/Hennepin4HVolunteer).
To become an official MN 4-H Volunteer, please complete this screening process
Gifts support 4-H youth development in Hennepin;County, and local programming coordinated by the Hennepin County 4-H Federation.
The Hennepin County 4-H Showcase Dashboard is your homebase and guide to the many projects and events that are available to your 4-H’ers this spring and summer!
2023 Showcase Dates & Project List:
- April 15: 4-H Food Show, Midtown Global Market
- All foods & nutrition projects
- April 29: 4-H Arts Revue, Elision Playhouse
- All expressive arts & communications projects
- June 15: Hennepin County Fair
- July 29-30: Hennepin County 4-H Dog Show
- July 30: Hennepin County 4-H Horse Show
Forms & Policies
Minnesota 4-H has developed a series of policies to provide continuity in programming from county to county and address risk management of our events and activities at county and state fairs. These statewide policies are accessible here and include but are not limited to:
Master Gardener volunteers are University of Minnesota-trained and bring researched-based information to the public about a variety of horticulture topics. Our work consists of seven priority areas:
Clean Water, Climate Change, Horticultural Skills, Local Food, Nearby Nature, Plant Biodiversity and Pollinators. Certified Master Gardener volunteers are required to provide 25 hours of service annually.
Become an MG
Master Gardener Volunteers take their knowledge and love of gardening into the Hennepin County Community and share it with others. Volunteers learn while they are volunteering; they also learn by attending required continuing education classes offered by the University of Minnesota, MN Landscape Arboretum and Minnesota Horticultural Society. The Master Gardener Volunteer Program is the perfect way to volunteer your time and talents AND learn more at the same time. Applications are accepted annually August 1 through October 1. During their first year, Master Gardener volunteers are expected to provide 50 hours of service, in addition to attending our 50 hour core course. Volunteers pay $295 for the course and background check; additional $25 for printed manual; scholarships are available. Application process and materials can be found here.
Health and nutrition
Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) is a Federal Extension or community outreach program that currently operates through the 1862 and 1890 Land-Grant Universities (LGUs) in every state, the District of Columbia, and the six U.S. territories – American Samoa, Guam, Micronesia, Northern Marianas, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. Funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture (USDA/NIFA), EFNEP uses education to support participants’ efforts toward self-sufficiency, nutritional health, and well-being. EFNEP combines hands-on learning, applied science, and program data to ensure program effectiveness, efficiency, and accountability.
Learn more about EFNEP and find links to state and local programs, EFNEP impacts and reports, and research findings. This site also includes program guidance for EFNEP implementers.
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed) team helps low-income individuals and families make diet and lifestyle choices to improve their health and prevent obesity. We provide families with tools and strategies to help counter the effects of food insecurity, poverty, and obesity. The University of Minnesota Extension SNAP-Ed team can partner with your agency on educational offerings, or on a project for changing practices and systems to create an environment conducive to healthier living.
Sharmyn Phipps, SNAP-Ed Regional coordinator
Kanko Akakpovi, SNAP-Ed Regional coordinator
Thao Pham - (Vietnamese Speaking), SNAP-Ed educator
Maria Teresa Thoreson (Spanish Speaking), SNAP-Ed educator
April Smith, SNAP-Ed educator
Nimo Yusuf (Somali Speaking), SNAP-Ed educator
Hibaq Dualeh (Somali Speaking), SNAP-Ed educator
Michael Stratten, SNAP-Ed educator
Shirley Vang (Hmong Speaking), SNAP-Ed educator
Anna Sneltjes, SNAP-Ed educator
email@example.com , 651-356-5425
Agriculture and natural resources
Minnesota is a great place to explore, understand and conserve the natural landscape. Extension education, volunteer and community science programs encourage people to become stewards of Minnesota’s public and private lands.
Attend agriculture or natural resource-related events near you.
Agriculture and natural resource conferences, in-person events, and online courses are offered all year around the state.
Find the latest on Extension agricultural and natural resource research and news you can use on your farm from local experts.
Statewide news and blogs
- Agricultural Business Management News - Business and financial resources for farmers.
- Beef News - Beef industry featured events, farm safety and animal health.
- Dairy News - Dairy industry featured events, farm safety and animal health.
- Fruit and Vegetable News - Local production and marketing of fruit and vegetable crops in Minnesota.
- Minnesota Crop News - Emerging issues affecting Minnesota row crops and forages.
- My Minnesota Woods - Find out how to take care of your trees and enjoy Minnesota's beautiful woodlands.
- Natural Resources News - From preserving our wetlands to combating invasive species, read about protecting and enjoying nature.
Extension engages Minnesotans to strengthen the social, civic, economic and technological capacity of their communities. We help create vibrant communities and enhance skills and knowledge in economics, leadership and civic engagement, and tourism.
Check our community research page for reports on county and community-focused topics relating to local economics, retaining businesses, growing retail markets, developing tourism, and more.
Local programs can be offered in collaboration with local community organizations and government agencies. Current programs include Minnesota Agricultural and Rural Leadership (MARL).
Contact an educator in your area for consultation, guidance and conversation about your community.
The Hennepin-University Urban Agriculture Initiative is a partnership between Hennepin County and Extension's local office. It brings together four key areas: 4-H Youth Development; Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources; Master Gardeners; and Health & Nutrition (SNAP-Ed and EFNEP). This program will transform vacant urban lots into community gardens. It will also be a learning space for youth and residents, and a place of connection and co-designed programs for the broader community. Youth and residents will gain skills and knowledge about urban agriculture. We will also oﬀer opportunities for community building, beauty, healing and intergenerational learning. Come grow with us! If you would like to connect, please contact Amie Mondl.
Join us at an event in your community.
Find opportunities to learn about the natural environment, how to care for your forest lands, and how you and your family can get out and explore nature around the state and in your own backyard.
Find information on community-focused news.
Find out how to take care of your trees and enjoy Minnesota's beautiful woodlands.
From preserving our wetlands to combating invasive species, read about protecting and enjoying nature.
Learn more about community-driven sustainability projects happening across Minnesota.
Hennepin County Extension
D. Craig Taylor, Regional Director, East Central Region
Amy Collura, Extension educator, 4-H Youth Development
John (Trip) Haggenmiller, EFNEP Health and Wellness Coordinator
Rachel Kimpton, Youth education & Community Programs Coordinator, Master Gardener Volunteer Program
Askia Luminae, Executive Office & Administrative Specialist
Joyce McGee-Brown, Senior EFNEP Health and Wellness Coordinator
Amie Mondl, Extension Educator, 4-H Youth Development, Urban
Thao Pham - (Vietnamese Speaking), SNAP-Ed Health and Wellness Coordinator
Ashley Purry, Extension Educator, 4-H Youth Development
Purry002@umn.edu or 612-596-2134
Terry Straub, Extension Educator, Master Gardener Volunteer Program
firstname.lastname@example.org, Office Phone: 612-596-2130
Anna Sneltjes, SNAP-Ed Health and Wellness Coordinator
Alyssa Woodard, 4-H Extension Educator, 4-H Youth Development
Nimo Yusuf (Somali Speaking), SNAP-Ed Health and Wellness Coordinator
Extension brings Minnesotans together to build a better future through University science-based knowledge, expertise and training. Learn more about Extension by visiting our about page and by browsing this website.