Dane County 4-H is teaming up with the county fair to keep the project showing experience alive, even though many fairs were canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Instead of showing photos or art projects at the fair this year, 4-H organizers and participants are gearing up for the virtual 4-H Summer Showcase that will be online, starting with some categories this week.

“The goal of offering a virtual 4-H Summer Showcase is to allow 4-H members an outlet to reflect on their project work and share their successes with their peers and others in the community,” Dane County 4-H Program Coordinator Lisa Curley wrote to the Observer in an email.

The registration and upload portals for most events are starting this week. There are different Summer Showcase opportunities for students including online 4-H project work galleries, a talent showcase, Zoom room project sharing, cookbook recipes, virtual dance with a DJ, virtual dog show and an awards and graduation ceremony.

The talent show videos that are five minutes or less will be available on Zoom July 16. The Virtual Dance category on Zoom is slated for 7 p.m. Saturday, July 18 and the online graduation ceremony is scheduled for Sunday, July 19.

Curley said in an email to the Observer that youth will have a wider audience by sharing 4-H projects online.

She said moving the Summer Showcase online will give community members an opportunity to see what 4-H is all about and what members are learning.

“By participating in the Summer Showcase, our 4-H members will develop new skills that will transfer to other areas of their lives, including utilizing different technology and online platforms,” Curley said.

Dane County has 38 4-H clubs, 965 youth members and more than 300 adult volunteers.