Enid “Dimps” Horn was 12 when she got her first taste of 4-H.
Now 60 years later, Horn is being recognized for her long leadership service to the organization, where she has held stints as leader of the Clinton 4-H Club, president of the Winter Fair and secretary of the Williams Lake and District 4-H organization.
“I do things for a long time,” said Horn, 73, who is still a resource person for the Clinton 4-H where she started showing steers in 1960. “I just got a gift in the mail congratulating me on my 50 years.”
Born and raised at Watch Lake Lodge, where she is now the sole proprietor, Horn said her parents initially enrolled her in the Clinton 4-H Club as a social event. She jumped at the chance to meet new people, noting Watch Lake was much more rural in 1960 than it is today.
At the time, the ranch had no running water “or anything like that” and every member of the family was responsible for carrying water from the creek, filling up the wood box and doing other chores when they weren’t attending classes at their little schoolhouse at the Flying U.
“We played all sorts of games and sports in school but you never went anywhere in those days,” she said.
As her family raised cattle, 4-H was a natural and cheap fit, she said. Back then “there was no money to put out,” she said, but “we were lucky if we got 28 cents a pound when we sold (a steer).”
Horn said 4-H is a a special organization that not only teaches youth how to feed and raise animals but crucial life skills such as record-keeping, public speaking, running a meeting and how to win and lose.
It also teaches responsibility, she said, noting on the days when she didn’t feel like feeding her steer, for instance, she realized she had no choice because he had to eat.
“The 4-H motto is to learn by doing,” she said. “It was just a good program to get involved in.”
When she “aged out” of the youth program, Horn became an assistant leader of the club and it carried on from there – for another 50 years.
“I loved it. I don’t even remember being nervous,” she said. “The special thing about it is the people, the friendships. They’ll never go away.”