Somerset County 4-H members selling books and sponsorships

4-Hers from several different clubs in Somerset County are currently in the community selling sponsorships for the 2022 Plat Books and taking orders for the book itself as part of a fundraising campaign. A flat book is a map of the county of Somerset which includes properties, boundaries and roads.

Every five years the Somerset County 4-H Council sponsors this project and revises the flatbook and 2022 is the year of the revision. On March 28, 4-H members and leaders from 17 4-H clubs gathered for a county-wide flatbook planning and launch meeting.

According to Bill Blough, a former 4-H member who originally helped start the fundraiser in 1964 with now-deceased Penn State extension workers Bob Antram and Jim Bochy raising money for the book dish has always been a hit in the county of Somerset. Since 1964, there have been 17 sales of five-yearly revised books. Along with Blough, Deb Miller has also served on the committee for this project since 1964.

He said last time in 2017, 4-H sold nearly 1,000 books and the response was good from both the business community in terms of publicity and the general public in terms of sales.

“The community looks forward to the sale of flat books every five years,” Blough said. “The flat book includes all landowners in Somerset County who own more than ten acres, then usually the initials of the landowner who owns less than ten acres. The mapping company goes to the Somerset County Courthouse and puts all up to date.”

MapppingSolutions will publish the County of Somerset 2022 Flat Book and have made the necessary changes to the Flat Book this year. This company has been publishing food books for over 50 years serving over 400 counties in 15 states. The entire production process, including printing and binding, is maintained in-house to ensure the quality and accuracy of each publication. For more information about the plat book company: https://www.mappingsolutionsgis.com.

“They did our food book in 2017 and we got great feedback from customers,” Blough said. “We sold nearly 1,000 copies on our last tour and hope to sell more this time around. When Somerset County started selling flat books in 1964, I was 20 and a member of the 4- H and we update them every five years since then and I was privileged to be part of the planning.”

4-H members are currently out in the community selling sponsorships and taking book orders. If for some reason a company has not been contacted to run an advertisement or someone would like to order a copy, call the Penn State Extension Office at 814-445-8911. Each advertiser will receive a free flat book for every $100 in ad sales. Each pound dish is $25.

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