Opening ceremonies for the annual Middlesex County 4-H Fair took place following a brief rainstorm on August 26. The Middlesex County 4-H Fife and Drum gave a rousing performance and led the 4-H clubs around the field to kick off the fair. 4-H Junior Fair Board members hosted the opening ceremonies and introduced the dignataries and special guests in attendance. Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources Commissioner John Lebeaux spoke and presented a check to the fair.
The featured speaker was Sarah Baum, former 4-H member, now working as a second grade teacher. Sarah spoke about how 4-H and her participation in the 4-H fair impacted her life. Sarah became involved in 4-H when she was 10. She stated, "You see, that first fair was the beginning of a very long journey. One that has lasted almost 20 years. I grew up on these fairgrounds. I spent many summer nights raking leaves and painting fences. I sheared my first sheep here. I ate ice cream from Kimball's with my friends. And I learned how to be a leader. This is where I had the realization that I wanted to be a teacher. This is the place where I eventually became a co-leader of my club and passed on the wisdom I had learned to the next generation of 4-H members." Sarah went on to talk about the many skills that she learned in 4-H in addition to leadership including public speaking and responsibility. She issued a challenge to the 4-H members exhibiting at the fair; "Write your own story. Carve your own journey. Revel in your accomplishments, learn from your mistakes and find out who you are and who you want to be. Live in the moment and enjoy it!"