Custer County 4-H Rules 

(Approved by 4-H Council March 28, 2023)

Specific rules governing the Horse projects are published in a separate document “Custer County Horse Rules”

Specific rules governing the activities and exhibits of the Eastern Montana Fair are found in the EMF Fair Premium List.

Membership and Age

  •  any child may enroll in 4-H if they reach their 9th birthday during the 4-H year which begins October 1st and ends September 30th of the following year. (up to age 19) Membership enrollment forms are due November 1st, and we would prefer they be in no later than January 1st of each year.
    • The 4-H program year is October 1 to September 30
    • Deadline for 4-H Member Enrollment - February 1st (members enrolled after February 1 will be considered “Late Enrollments”)
      • No 4-H member will be allowed to participate in the fair if enrolled after February 1st.

Dues/Literature Costs:

  • Dues for the year are $10 per each member and no dues for Cloverbuds. The State asks for $5 per member, which the dues cover. The Council pays for the literature costs through the county wide fundraiser and food booth monies.
    • The junior division includes 4-Hers younger than 14 as of October 1 and the senior division includes 4-Hers 14 or older by October 1st. (fair, demonstrations, judging, etc.)
    • All members must be an active member in an organized club each year. “At Large” membership is not allowed in Custer County. It is the responsibility of the member to know and understand the policies of their club to maintain the status of “member in good standing” for participation in 4-H activities such as fair, trips, county events, etc.


  • for members younger than 6 to 8 years as of October 1. Cloverbuds are encouraged to be 1st or 2nd graders or 6 years of age turning 7 during the 4-H year.

Travel Requirements

  • 4-H members who apply for out-of-county trips are required to follow guidelines and codes of conduct for such trips. Failure to comply may result in being sent home and the members may not be eligible for future trips.



  • Custer County fund raising events are a county wide fundraiser organized by the fundraising committee annually and the 4-H food booth at the fair or any activities of a particular project group.
    • Each member is required to participate in the fundraising activities. Cloverbuds may sell but are not required to.

Project Requirements

  • Projects – June 1st is the deadline for dropping projects for the year.
  • Project Books: the project records must be completed to the standards published by the State Center for 4-H Youth Development to receive credit for the project year.
    • It is not necessary to show projects at the fair to complete the project.
    • Every member is required to enroll in and complete a minimum of one project per year.
    • Member must complete the required activities in the project activity book as listed in the guide published by the State, and/or at least 7 documented project related learning or a combination of book activities and documented learning activities to complete the project level.


  • Cloverbuds – Must be 6 yrs on                                            October 1
  • Junior Membership Age – must be 8 yrs on                      October 1
  • Senior Membership Age – must be 14 yrs on                   October 1
  • Teen Leader Council – must be 9th Grade on                   October 1
  • Member Enrollment deadline                                              February 1
  • Market Beef Enrollment                                                        January 1
  • Last day to add a project to show at Fair                           February 1
  • Yearling Colt or Horse for Horsemanship Project            April 1
  • Small Animals                                                                          June 1
  • Project Add (Non fair exhibit projects) /Drop Deadline   June 1
  • All other market or Breeding Livestock                              June 1
  • (Goat, Sheep, Swine and Breeding Beef)
  • Feed Beef Project                                                                    June1
  • Congress Registration Due                                                    June 15
  • Record book due Date                                                           September 10


Record Books

    • Record books due September 10th to the Custer County Extension Office. Leaders will not evaluate their own club’s books for completeness.
    • If a member wants to advance to higher level in a project, they must complete the records and project requirements for that project.
    • If a member does not complete their records, they may re-enroll but will not get year-end awards or move up in project levels.
    • 4-H members who do not turn in a completed record book will be ineligible to apply for state awards, leadership positions, trips, etc. For those enrolled in livestock projects selling market animals, checks will not be given out until record books are checked and determined to be complete by a leader.
    • Record Books utilize the “For the Record” guidelines.
    • Leadership, community service and citizenship awards will be awarded solely on the record book presented at record book judging.
    • Project activity completion recommendations published by the Montana Center for Youth Development will be utilized as the guideline to evaluate a member’s completion of a project level.