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OSU Extension

College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences


Wayne County 4-H Horse Department

Things to Consider Before Taking A Horse Project

Think about how much space is required to house a horse or pony.  Do you have enough physical space and the proper shelter or are you able to board the animal somewhere?  Are you aware of feed and hay costs and and have you budgeted for them?  Are you prepared to invest the money and time involved in caring for, grooming, walking and riding a horse or pony to train them to be ready for the fair? Are the youth and parent(s), guardian(s), or other adult helper(s) prepared to make the time and financial commitment?  Have you considered what tack and/or show clothing you'll need to purchase or borrow?  Horse projects are very rewarding but are also among the most time-intensive and expensive 4-H projects.

2021 Horse Calendar of Events

  • Enroll in 4-H through 4-H Online by April 1st (note: clubs may set an earlier deadline)
  • May 17th - Horse Informational Meeting/Clinic, 6:00 PM in the Coliseum
  • June 1st - Obtain and care for your project animal(s) on or before June 1st
  • June 1st - Complete Animal ID for all possible animals (including family back-ups) that you could possibly enter in the fair through 4-HOnline on or before June 1st.  Help sheets are available at
  • Complete Quality Assurance Training by July 27th.  QA will be offered virtually in 2021. See the Quality Assurance page for more details.
  • Skillathon - Skillathon will be offered virtually between July 1 and July 23.  Check our Skillathon page for more information.
  • July 8th - Project Interviews - 5-9 pm, Fairgrounds Event Center (pre-registration required)
  • July 8th - Outstanding Horse Exhibitor (OHE) Exam - 7 pm, Click here for more OHE information
  • August 1 - Fair Entries - Make all Junior Fair Class Entries at
  • View the Full 2021 Horse Calendar of Events Inlcuding Fun Show Dates and Other Events

Horse Project Books

  • The books listed below can be ordered through your 4-H club advisor, purchased directly from the Wayne County Extension Office, or ordered online at
  • Beginning Horse Management (174) - This beginning-level project is for ALL youth starting in the 4-H horse program. The basics of caring for a horse, learning to ride, and showmanship are covered in 170 pages, many with color photographs. There is no time limit to complete this project.
  • Draft Horse (181)Are you fascinated with draft horses and want to know more about these magnificent giants? Learn about their care, feeding, harnessing, hitching, showing, and much more with this updated project book. Complete 4-H 190R Equine Record each year project is taken
  • Dressage (189) By patiently developing a horse's mental and physical abilities, youth work toward a perfect understanding between horse and rider. This project asks youth to complete a "Planning Your Project" section, several activities, learning experiences, and citizenship/leadership activities; keep records; and write a one-page report. This project requires access to a horse. Use with 190R Equine Record Book.
  • Equine Reproduction and Genetics (185) - Explore breeding and mare and foal management in a project that requires commitment. Use with 190R Equine Record Book.
  • Horse Nutrition (762) - Explore digestion, nutrients, feedstuffs, rationing, and poison plant identification to protect the health of the horse you love. Use with 190R Equine Record Book.
  • Learning to Jump (180) - Want to put your horse skills to work on something new? This project starts with a foundation of proper riding techniques, then teaches you the basics of how to jump in an easy-to-understand sequence of exercises. Expert tips and a troubleshooting guide keep you on track to have fun and stay safe while learning to jump. Use with 190R Equine Record Book
  • Light Horse Selection (175) - Judge horses and classes after studying basic horse anatomy for a sound basis in the selection of pleasure or breeding stock. Use with 190R Equine Record Book
  • Trail Riding (188)Team up with your horse for competition or pleasure trail riding. Learn the basics of conditioning your horse. Use with 190R Equine Record Book
  • Horse Training: How to Talk to Your Horse (177) - Training horses from birth to maturity. Understand horse behavior and how to use it to create a good relationship between horse and rider. Basic Horse Training videos by Dr. Robert Kline are available at Use with the 190R Equine Record Book
  • Standardbred Horses (184) - Learn how to safely harness your horse to a cart and drive, whether it is a Standardbred racehorse or a pleasure driving horse. Use with 190R Equine Record Book
  • Small Equine (182) - This intermediate project is for a miniature horse, donkey, or mule. Learn the basics of caring for small equine, guiding in-hand and driving, and showmanship. Youth must complete 191R Horses, Safety, and You, and 174 Beginning Horse Management before taking this project. Use with 190R Equine Record Book each year project is taken. 
  • Equine Record Book (190R) - Required for horse projects 175, 177, 180, 181, 184, 185, 188, 189, and 762. Complete one record book every year. 

Horse Project Guidelines and Forms

Horse Animal ID Requirements

2021 Horse Animal ID Help Sheet - overview of how to enter horse Animal ID in 4-HOnline and lists which fields and forms are required and which are optional.

Horse Clinic / Educational Resources

Horse Fun Shows

Horse PAS / State Fair Information

Horse Outstanding Exhibitor Awards Program

Horse Outstanding Record Book Awards

  • The Outstanding Record Book Awards are designed to recognize youth that take time to thoroughly complete their records books adding in details and financial, feed, and health records from throughout the entire project including records from during and after the fair. Youth wishing to have their record books judged should turn them in to the Extension Office by October 1st.  Awards are presented at the Fall 4-H Recognition Banquet.
  • Horse Outstanding Record Book Award Rubric

Horse Junior Fair Information

State 4-H Horse Website

For more information about the Ohio 4-H Horse Program be sure to visit

Horse Committee

  • The Wayne County 4-H / FFA / Jr. Fair Horse Action committee is responsible for planning, organizing, and carrying out the horse program in consultation with and under the authority of OSU Extension and the Wayne County Agricultural Society (Senior Fair Board)
  • Our 2021 Horse Committee is made up of the following individuals: Janelle Firestone (Chair), Mattie Leway (Vice Chair), Andrea Billman (Secretary), Sarah Rusmisel (Treasurer), Victoria Devore, Michele Holcomb, Lori Hershey, Julie Lightfoot, Lisa Miller, Kevin Saffell, Mallory Warner, Linda Wright, Alex DeWitt (FFA), Doug Foxx (OSU Extension) and Junior Fair Board members Caitlyn DeMassimo, Sam Bohner, Mackenzie Hartzler, and Angelena VanZile.

Wayne County 4-H Horse Facebook Group

Be sure to join our Wayne County 4-H Horse Facebook Group where we share reminders, announcements, and other educational content related to the 4-H Horse Program.  Check us out on facebook at: