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California 4-H to create biofuel Oct. 7

On Oct. 7, youth in counties across California will join hundreds of thousands of young people across the nation to simultaneously create biofuel. As part of 4-H National Youth Science Day, youth will conduct Biofuel Blast, the 2009 National Science Experiment.

Biofuel Blast will teach youth how cellulose and sugars in plants – such as corn, switchgrass, sorghum and algae – can be converted into fuel and how these alternative energies can be used in their own communities.

To combat a national shortage of young people pursuing science college majors and careers, 4-H National Youth Science Day aims to spark an early interest in science education. Currently, more than 5 million youth across the nation take part in 4-H science, engineering and technology year-long programming. Through the One Million New Scientists, One Million New Ideas campaign, 4-H has undertaken a bold goal to engage 1 million new young people in science, engineering and technology programs by the year 2013.

• WHEN: Oct. 7. Many 4-H clubs will conduct the experiment at meetings throughout October.

• WHERE: 4-H clubs and 4-H after school sites in communities across California. To attend a biofuel event in your county, please contact your local 4-H Cooperative Extension office for times and locations:

— Events going on around California:

• Alameda County: Led at the Redwood 4-H club on Oct. 7, at 6:30 p.m.

• El Dorado County: Led at the 4-H office on Oct. 7, from 6 to 8 p.m.

• Glenn/Tehama counties: 30 after school sites conducting the experiment.

• Humboldt County: 4-H staff conducting the experiment with the county 4-H Leaders' Council on Sept. 28.

• Imperial County: Expanding the basic experiment. Kits will be offered to 4-H volunteers. 4-H is engaging valley farmers who are already part of a commercial biofuel operation.

• Lake County: Supplying each 4-H Club with a kit. Each club will determine appropriate place and time.

• Placer County: Conducting the experiment at the County Achievement Night, Oct. 3, 6:30 p.m., at the Loomis Memorial Hall. County 4-H office preparing a kit for each 4-H club to conduct at their October 4-H club meeting.

• Orange County: Oct. 7, 4 p.m., Solano Park, 21682 Via Regresso, Rancho Santa Margarita. RSVP to Vicki Doddridge at or (949) 766-8708.

• Riverside County: Will offer the experiment at the county fair all week, So. Cal Fair in Lake Terrace, third week in October.

• San Bernardino County: First week of October (National 4-H Week) titled "4-H Science Week." Each day, 4-H staff, volunteers and teens will engage youth at an elementary after school program in 4-H SET activities.

• San Diego County: Assembling discovery kits for each 4-H club with the materials needed.

• San Luis Obispo County: Five experiments led with 4th grade classes at the SLO County's "The Great AGventure" event on Oct. 7. Nipomo Foothill and Rio Rancheros 4-H Clubs will lead the experiment at a club meeting.

• San Mateo County: Featuring the experiment at the Awards and Enrollment Social on Oct. 4. 4-H Clubs will be conducting the experiment throughout October.

• Siskiyou County: Three 4-H clubs (approx. 150 members) leading the experiment during National 4-H Week. 4-H members leading the experiment at after school programs the month of October.

• Solano County: 4-H All Star Ambassadors tentatively plan to lead experiment at County Board of Supervisors meeting on Oct. 6.

• Tuolumne County: Eight 4-H clubs will lead the experiment at their club meetings the second week of October. Setup at the beginning of the meeting, hold the business meeting, and then observe and discuss after the meeting.

• Ventura County: Ordered kits for all 18 4-H clubs. Each club will determine appropriate place and time.

Don't see your county listed? All counties are participating so contact your County 4-H Cooperative Extension Office for more information.

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