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Extension > Youth Development > Minnesota 4-H > State Fair > State Fair Chaperones

State Fair Chaperones

Dormitory Manager Responsibilities

The state 4-H staff employs a few dormitory assistants, supervised by the facilities coordinator. The dorm staff have the following responsibilities:

  1. Assign all participants to bunks prior to their arrival. Note: participants assigned to Bailey Hall may be asked to sleep on the floor. If your group is assigned to Bailey Hall, half of your delegation should bring air mattresses or cots. Please check with dorm managers if you are assigned to Bailey Hall or come prepared for this.
  2. Maintain neatness and sanitation in the dormitory and lavatory facilities. Dorms and staircases are swept daily and sanitary facilities are inspected hourly.
  3. Assist the adult in charge to register his/her group into the dorm and in making bunk assignments.
  4. Provide 24-hour safety watch for fire protection and/or unauthorized persons in dorm.
  5. Alert the nurse on duty when first aid and treatment of illness is necessary.
  6. Maintain order and provide friendly counseling.
  7. Contact the adult in charge concerning:
    1. Personal concerns for a delegate.
    2. Illness or injury to a delegate.
    3. Discipline problems.
  8. Serve as a liaison between the dormitory residents and their chaperones and the facilities coordinator.
  9. Conduct informational meeting for adults in charge.

Educator and Program Coordinator/Program Director Responsibilities

  1. Educators and program coordinators/directors are responsible for recruiting and briefing the adult in charge if they do not serve in this capacity themselves.
  2. Educators and program coordinators/directors are encouraged to sleep in the dormitory unless an adult in charge has been designated. A bunk number must be listed in case of emergency.
  3. Educators and program coordinators/directors not staying in the dormitory must be available throughout the night by telephone in case of an emergency. Please leave your phone number at the dormitory desk when you receive dorm assignments.


A male and female adult volunteer must be designated for mixed delegations. It may be an Extension staff member or adult volunteer. If chaperones are not Extension staff, it is expected that they have been through the volunteer screening process. They are to be designated prior to the fair on 4-H Staff and Adult Volunteer Contact Information form. Where several counties cooperate to provide adult chaperones, care must be taken that the adult in charge has a complete list of the delegates for which he/she is responsible and that each delegate knows he/she is responsible to that adult. A sample job description follows:


Time Commitment: As the adult in charge in the dorm you will:

  1. Plan and conduct county orientation for state fair participants.
  2. Attend the adult chaperone meeting at 5:30 p.m. the first night of your encampment.
  3. Be present in the dorm by 10:30 p.m. to check in the county(ies) for which you are responsible by 11 p.m.
  4. Sleep in the 4-H dormitory every night of your encampment.

General Description: As the adult in charge, you will be responsible for the conduct of your county delegation while they are in the 4-H dormitory. This involves being a counselor/advisor for your group and enforcing dormitory rules/policies.

Specific Duties: As the adult in charge you will:

  1. Plan and conduct orientation of county's state fair 4-H delegates. Specific policies you should cover include:
    • Delegate schedules and the expectation that they participate in all scheduled programs, etc. scheduled for them.
    • State 4-H policy prohibits the use of alcohol, tobacco (chewing and smoking are both included) and any non-prescription drug use during a 4-H event. Breaking this rule can result in being sent home at 4-H participant expense and loss of all awards and premiums.
    • Leaving the grounds during the event is permitted only during a scheduled part of the program or through written consent form signed by you or the 4-H participant's legal guardian.
    • Evening check-in procedures.
  2. Attend the adult chaperone meeting at 5:30 p.m. the first night of your encampment.
  3. Be present in the dorm by 10:30 p.m. to check in your county(ies) for which you are responsible. Curfew is 11:00 p.m. Use 4-H Dorm Form 3 available at the adult chaperone meeting and the dormitory desk.
  4. Quiet your delegates and see that they get to their bunks without disturbing others.
  5. Sleep in the 4-H dormitory every night of your encampment.
  6. Handle discipline problems referred by the dormitory staff; you will be notified of any problems via the 4-H dorm infraction/problem report.
  7. Keep in touch with your delegation during the event to encourage and support them. You are their counselor and advisor for this event.
Qualifications: As the adult in charge you will need:
  1. Adult volunteers may be of any age but young adults must have passed membership age. Volunteer chaperones must be at least 21 years of age at the time of service and screened to level III. Paid intern staff, regardless of age, may be put into a chaperone role upon specific request by their supervisor. To feel at ease with pre-teens and teens; this is especially important if you are under 21 years of age.
  2. The physical and emotional endurance to function in a group living situation with a busy schedule.
  3. The ability to handle discipline or action in a counseling or advising situation or emergency.
  4. The ability to take direction from others, including those younger.
  5. To be knowledgeable about county and state discipline policies and procedures.
  6. A sincere interest in the 4-H program and youth.
  7. A desire to attend the Minnesota State Fair.
  8. To have completed the volunteer screening process.
Resources Available: As the adult in charge you will have these resources available to you: Benefits: As the adult in charge you will receive:


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