Over 1,350 excited children enjoyed a warm sunny day on June 1 for the annual Harlan County 4-H Poke Sallet Kids’ Fun Day. Kids’ Fun Day is the traditional kick off for the Poke Sallet Festival. This year marks the 14th anniversary of the celebration which was held at Huff Park. Until 2002, 4-H Fun Day was held on the Harlan County Courthouse lawn.
The event keeps getting bigger and more fun every year. According to Raymond Cox, 4-H Agent, this year’s attendance was the largest in the past 20 years.
This year’s events included a fly in by the Air Evac Medical Helicopter, allowing children to sit in the helicopter and take photos. The Harlan County Sheriff’s Office also allowed children to sit in the cruiser and take photos. Kentucky Division of Fish and Wildlife gave children the opportunity to participate with hands on for archery. The Harlan Fire Department displayed truck and equipment.
Terry Conners, University of Kentucky agriculture and forestry specialist, demonstrated the difference in white oak and red oak. Children learned the difference in porous red oak and non-porous white oak by blowing bubbles through porous red oak. Conners also discussed various aspects of wood and the importance of wood products.
A petting zoo was provided free of charge. A small fee was charged for rides and for animal feed. Free inflatables were provided by Harlan County 4-H Council and Harlan County Government.
Educational and fun exhibits plus free items were provided by KCEOC, Harlan ARH, Harlan County Extension Service, Harlan Farm Bureau, Harlan County Adult Education of Southeast Community College, Dave Robinson from the Army Corps of Engineers with water safety and free materials, Face Painting by Harlan County 4-H Teens, Cindy Howard provided dental education and free toothbrushes. Dr. Carl Smith also provided freebies and educational information. CAA provided free lunches for the children.
Cumberland Hope Center ladies helped maintain the inflatables and helped clean up. CAA also provided handouts and free items.
Concessions were sold by Harlan County 4-H Teen Club and 4-H Council to provide activities and events for 4-H teens. Egg toss games, sack races, and hula hoop contests were provided by Harlan County 4-H.
Appreciation is expressed to Harlan Little League and City Government for use of Huff Park, Harlan County Government for partial payment of petting zoo and Inflatables, Shirt Shack, Crow in the Morning Publicity and all those volunteers who came and helped give out T-shirts.