‘A great celebration for 4-H’

Millstone 4-H Camp readies $1 million learning center and auditorium

By Kevin Spradlin
PeeDeePost.com

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MILLSTONE — Millstone 4-H Camp is in its 76th year, and local and state 4-H advocates are planning for the next 75 to go as well as the first — or better.

Nearly 100 dignitaries and 4-H supporters gathered at the rural 320-acre woodland site Friday afternoon and enjoyed the crisp air of a winter North Carolina day — sunny with a light breeze and temperatures dipping into the mid-30s. But what brought everyone together was, at least almost, enough to warm everyone up: the ceremonial ground-breaking for the new 4-H Learning Center and Auditorium. The project was first reported on PeeDeePost.com in August 2014.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Two of the nearly 100 attendees of the groundbreaking ceremony at Millstone 4-H Camp on Friday take a look at the conceptual drawings of what the 4-H Learning Center and Auditorium will look like.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Two of the nearly 100 attendees of the groundbreaking ceremony at Millstone 4-H Camp on Friday take a look at the conceptual drawings of what the 4-H Learning Center and Auditorium will look like.

The estimated $1 million-plus project is supported by grants from the State Employees Credit Union Foundation ($750,000) and the Cole Foundation ($250,000) and comes at a time when N.C. State University has scaled back the number of 4-H camps across North Carolina to three from eight.

Officials held a pre-bid meeting Friday morning at Millstone for the 3,500-square foot building. Hobbs Architects, of Pittboro, is lead designer on the project. Bids are to be received by 3 p.m. on March 4.

 

The system is investing heavily into the Millstone facility,  situated within the 60,000-acre Sandhills Wildlife Management Gamelands. The learning center will be “the crown jewel” of the a place where youth can learn about and experience outdoors learning. The auditorium will have a capacity of more than 150. The goal is to stage the dedication in October.

“It’s been a long time coming,” said Dr. Richard Linton, dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. “It’s a great celebration for 4-H.”

McKinley Wooten Jr., chairman of the SECU Foundation board, said the funds board members make available come through monthly contributions of $1 from SECU members. It helps, he said, two have nearly two million members.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Neal Cadieu Jr., board member with the Cole Foundation that contributed $250,000 towards the $1 million project, said the foundation has long been an advocate for 4-H activities in Richmond County.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Neal Cadieu Jr., board member with the Cole Foundation that contributed $250,000 towards the $1 million project, said the foundation has long been an advocate for 4-H activities in Richmond County.

Wooten spoke highly of the project, which will facilitate Millstone 4-H Camp to continue being “a place where dreams will be fulfilled.”

Neal Cadieu Jr. said the Cole Foundation has long been a supportive of 4-H activities. In addition to the current project, Cadieu said the foundation has contributed $440,000 to 4-H in Richmond County.

Linton said 4-H and youth programs have been identified as a critical program component. It turns out practice imitates policy. Keith Russell, camp director, is gearing up for another busy year at the facility. Highlights include the District 6 Youth Hunter Skills Tournament on March 21, the state tournament on April 25, 4-H Horsemanship Camp beginning June 14, Boat Camp starting July 12 and Fur, Fish and Game Rendezvous starting July 19. 4-H residential and day camps also are available this summer.

Walking tours of the camp were available before and after the brief groundbreaking ceremony. Jordan’s Catering provided a light fare to help stave off the chilly air.

A conceptual drawing from October 2014 shows what planners believe they can make happen at Millstone 4-H Camp.

A conceptual drawing from October 2014 shows what planners believe they can make happen at Millstone 4-H Camp.

Filed in: Ellerbe/Norman, Farm & Ag, Featured News, Latest Headlines, News, Outdoors

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