U of I Extension offers hands-on workshops and clubs for young people


The University of Illinois Extension offers a variety of hands-on 4-H workshops and special interest clubs for youth and teens. Check out the current offerings and sign up to learn new skills in a variety of subjects, from cooking to photography, drawing to archery and more.

Age requirements and fees vary by workshop or club. You can get information and register here or call the Illinois Extension Office at 309-756-9978.

Upcoming workshops open to all young people:

Photograph 101: Saturday, March 12, 9:30-11 a.m. Rock Island County Extension, Milan

Join this workshop to learn about the art of photography, lighting, and composition. You’ll also discover ways to enhance the photos you take with your phone’s camera. If you want to get more involved with photography, instructor Mike Bisom will help you get started! FOR FREE. For young people from 8 to 18 years. register here.

Put it Up: Fruit Leather & Freezer Jam Food Preservation Class, Wednesday, March 16, 6-7:30 p.m., Rock Island County Extension, Milan

Kristin Bogdonas, IL Extension’s Nutrition and Wellness Educator, will lead this workshop where you will learn how to make Strawberry Banana Frozen Jam and Fruit Leather. Watch the process, taste the results and take home a jar of jam. $10 deployment fee. For young people from 9 to 13 years. register here.

Portrait Drawing Workshop, Saturday, April 2, 10-11:30am, Rock Island County Extension, Milan

Ever wanted to draw pictures of your friends and family? You will learn techniques artists use to create realistic looking pencil and charcoal portraits: shape, line, proportion and shading. We will also work on colorful Picasso style portraits. You can also take home your own starter drawing set! $10 deployment fee. For young people from 8 to 12. Register here.

April’s “I DID THIS!” DIY Cooking Kits include Quick Breads, register by March 28th

The University of Illinois Extension & 4-H offer a fun opportunity to build confidence and healthy habits with April’s I Made That! cooking set. Learn how to make a variety of quick breads including drop cookies, loaf bread, cornbread, and muffins. Discover proper mixing techniques, leavening agents, substitutes, and how to value bread. After spending time in the kitchen, youngsters can head outside to enjoy all that spring has to offer while they explore and participate in a scavenger hunt to celebrate Move More Month. Register now for this April program. The kits cost $5 and include a backyard scavenger hunt, a baking guide, quick bread recipes, grading tools for your cornbread and muffins, baking powder, poppy seeds, and your choice of spatula or measuring spoon. You can be picked up from April 4th at one of our extension offices in Milan, Viola or Galva. Registration until March 28th here.

Upcoming Special Interest Clubs, open to all youth. (Non-4-H members must register with 4-H, which costs $20 per year.)

Archery Club, Fridays, 6:30 p.m.m.Teufelsschlucht Park, Bettendorf

Calling all archers. Become a master archer by practicing target shooting every week! Learn safety and responsible handling and use. Equipment is provided by the Youth Shooting Sports Association and by the 4-H Foundation, NRA and USA Archery. There is a $20 fee per 6 week session. (New 4-H members also pay the $20 4-H registration fee). Open to young people between the ages of 8 and 18. Register yourself here.

Air Pistol/Air Rifle Club, Tuesdays, 6:30 p.m., Milan Rifle Club, Milan

Improve your marksmanship by practicing every week. You will also learn about firearm safety and responsible handling and use. Gear and ammo are provided through grants from 4-H, NRA, United Way, Midway USA and many QCA Outdoor organizations. There is a $20 fee per 6-week session (New 4-H members also pay the $20 annual 4-H program fee.) Open to youth ages 8-18. Register yourself here.

Lego Robotics 4-H Club, Thu, March 17, 6 p.m., Rock Island County 4-H, Milan

Robots are omnipresent in everyday life. Learn to design, build and program robots in this exciting, hands-on club. This club is open to all young people between the ages of 8 and 18. It meets (usually) on the 3rd Thursday of every month. Email 4-H educator Jennifer Peterson at [email protected]

4-H Fishing Club, Saturdays April 23-April 28 May, 9-11 a.m., Aledo

Mercer County Fishing Club begins April 23 from 9-10 a.m. at Central Park in Aledo. Then they meet every Saturday, April 30 through May 28, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at various fishponds around Mercer County. The pond locations will be announced at the first meeting. Limit of 10 young people. Open to young people from 8 to 15 years. Sign up by April 15th. Fee includes the cost of your own supplies plus a $10 bait fee (the club provides the live bait). New 4-H members also pay the annual 4-H program fee of $20. to register here.

If you require reasonable accommodation to attend, call 309-756-9978.


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