The 2021 Queen’s Tea was held on Thursday evening with four candidates vying for the position of Fayette County Fair Queen.
The event began at 4 p.m. at the Mahan Building with Tami Johnson serving as the emcee for the event. Johnson thanked those in attendance while the four candidates — Abigail Mick, Katrina Koski, Taylor Moore and Garren Walker — conducted interviews. The judges for the queen selection were Annette and Olivia Rinesmith, a mother-daughter pair from Madison County.
“The two of us have had such an amazing hour and a half just talking to the girls who are running for queen,” Annette said. “You ladies have given us a tough job. We appreciate the girls who came out and just being willing to run for a queen position. They all looked amazing, they can speak well — we have a tough job ahead of us.”
After passing out raffle tickets for a table full of prizes, Johnson asked questions of those at the tea to earn more tickets. Prizes from the raffle included hats, shirts, cups, gift certificates, a candle and much more from many local sponsors.
Additionally, while the four candidates were completing their interviews, food was available for the guests and cake was served. Johnson continued the festivities with a series of critical thinking one-liners — named “Things that make you go hmmm?” — that the crowd enjoyed.
Finally, the four candidates were brought before the small crowd and each took a turn pulling a question out of a basket and then answering the question.
The first question was for Mick: What could be done to help our 4-H youth at this time?
“I feel like a big thing that could help our 4-H youth would be to give them direction when they come to check in,” Mick said. “I think that is a little bit chaotic at this time, I think if we give them direction and help them and tell them where to go. And also just getting really involved with them. They have a lot more fun when the older members get involved because you are showing them what they can look up to. So just getting involved, having fun, not stressing about stuff would be the biggest things.”
The second question was for Koski: What advice would you give a young girl wanting to run for fair queen?
“The advice I would give is just be involved as much as you can before your senior year,” Koski said. “Then when you get to your senior year just try and fill out the application — even though it is very long, just fill it out. The worst that can happen is you don’t get picked. That’s not always a huge deal.”
The third question was for Moore: What do you feel is your greatest strength and weakness?
“My greatest strength is the ability to get kids involved,” Moore said. “Last year I managed to get a lot of kids into the dairy barn, more than there was. I want to get more kids with disabilities involved because you don’t see very many of those kids and I feel like they are able to do the same things that we are. My weakness, a couple years ago I got an attitude in the show ring because my cow gave me attitude, so I tugged on the chain that he had under his neck and it was very loud. My mom told me if I ever do that again she would take me out of the ring and I would never show again.”
The final question was for Walker: If you could be remembered for one thing after your reign, what would it be and why?
“If I could be remembered for one thing after my reign as Queen and if I were to be Queen, I want kids to remember how someone in a leadership role is supposed to act,” Walker said. “I want them to remember it isn’t about the crown, the sash, the royalty part of it, it is about getting the kids involved in the program, it is about influencing them, growing the program even more. In this county we do lack numbers, we do need to grow as a county and I believe if you see a good role model — like a little girl seeing the queen and they think I want to be a good leader, I want to be the queen. This is a part of 4-H, it isn’t all just the names and everything else, 4-H is not just one thing and I think that leadership role is something everyone needs to learn.”
According to Queen’s Tea officials, all four girls will be on the court with one being named queen, one being named the first attendant and the final two being named attendants. The new queen will be introduced at the junior fair opening ceremonies on Sunday, July 18.
The 142nd Fayette County Fair will run from July 19-24.
Stay with the Record-Herald for more coverage of the 142nd Fayette County Fair.
Reach Martin Graham at (740) 463-9684 or on Twitter @MartiTheNewsGuy.