2023 Iowa State Fair Queen Coronation
This annual fair tradition brings together county fair queens from across the state who showcase the very best in personality, leadership, citizenship and involvement in their local communities.
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Good evening ladies and gentlemen and welcome to the 2023 Iowa State Fair Queen Coronation.
I am your co-emcee, Hailey Swan.
And I'm the other co-emcee, Jerry Parkin.
[Hailey Swan] We have a few announcements that we would like to make before we get started with tonight's event. The Iowa State Fair Queen Coronation highlights will air this Tuesday, August 15 on Iowa PBS State Fair program during the 9pm broadcast.
You can hear more from the 2023 State Fair Queen on Iowa PBS' State Fair show this Thursday August 17 during the 9pm broadcast. The live stream of the queen's coronation will be tomorrow at 1pm on iowapbs.org. So everything you see here tonight you can also watch tomorrow at 1pm.
Tonight is the 57th annual coronation of the Iowa State Fair queen. We have 90 members of 4-H, 78 members of FFA, with a combined GPA of 3.76. Can you please give it up for a round of applause for Iowa's best.
This week these young ladies have exuded elegance and poise. They are active, not only in their counties, but they are also making a positive impact in their communities. They are here today because of the impact that you have had on their lives. Never forget the power of being a good example to a young person. Thank you all for being here today to support these lovely County Fair Queens of Iowa.
[Jerry Parkin] Tonight is the culmination of five days of workshops, interviews and evaluations for these girls, so you can expect they're probably pretty beat right now. But when they come out here please take a look at them as they sit in front of you. They're smart. They're talented. They're committed. They are strong and they are leaders. They are the future. We need to make certain that they have every possible opportunity to succeed.
Thank you to the ladies behind the doors for what you have done, what you do, and what you will do in the future. As you come out here, look out into the crowd and you'll see proud parents, grandparents, brothers and sisters, other relatives and friends. Should make you feel pretty good. So, please ladies, when you leave here tonight be sure to tell your parents, "thank you." They certainly help to make you what you are today.
[Hailey] These ladies have had so much fun making new friendships, creating new memories throughout this week. This week would not be possible without a few people that we would like to thank. First we want to thank our State Fair Queen Coordinator Amanda Cook, who is also the 2016 Iowa State Fair Queen. Please give her a round of applause. We would also like to thank the assistants and chaperones who helped this week as well. Jeanette and Lexi Riniker, Alyssa Orr, Ellen Schlarmann, Hannah Koellner, Kelsey DeWitt and McKenna Henrich, and Claudia DiCandia.
Tonight these young ladies will be escorted by our state officers of FFA and they are Collin Bauer, Will Vlasek, Sam Martin and George Martin.
We would also like to give a special thanks to our judges, Paris Springer-Schnepf, Brian Meyer, Caine Wood, Bonnie Andersen and Jeff Patterson.
[Jerry] I will guarantee you they did not have an easy time of this the last few days.
This wouldn't be possible without the strong support of the Iowa State Fair Board. They do a lot every month to make this fair happen. Meeting 60 to 70 days a year at some times. So, I want to take a minute and introduce them. They're all sitting back here. I'm going to start with a newbie, who's not really a newbie, but our new Fair Manager and CEO Jeremy Parsons.
- Our board President Darwin Gaudian from Northwest Iowa.
- Vice President Curtis Claeys from Southeast Iowa.
- Treasurer Deb Zumbach from Northeast Iowa.
- Other members of the board are VerDon Schmitt from Northwest Iowa.
- Alan Brown from North Central Iowa.
- Gary McConnell from Southeast Iowa. Gary also serves as liaison to this queen competition.
- Randy Brown from South Central Iowa.
- John Harms from Northeast Iowa.
- Jo Reynolds from South Central Iowa.
- C.W. Thomas from Southwest Iowa.
- Gary Van Aernam from Southwest Iowa.
- Tennie Carlson from North Central Iowa. Tennie is the other liaison with the queen competition. So I know she and Gary have a little extra oomph tonight and we appreciate that.
The others I want to introduce are Tonya Cook, who's probably hiding in the back. Tonya is special events coordinator for the Iowa State Fair.
Other board members include the Governor of the State of Iowa Kim Reynolds. And Governor Reynolds is represented by Lieutenant Governor Adam Gregg on the board.
Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig who's represented by Grant Menke.
And the president of Iowa State University, Wendy Wintersteen who's represented by Andrea Welchans.
So thank you all.
[Hailey] We know that you all have traveled long and far to be here tonight, and we would like to, without further ado, head over to the podium to start our introductions of the 2023 Iowa State Fair County Queen contestants.
[Jerry] Let's go ahead and get started. We start off, of course alphabetically, with Adair County. And they will open the doors soon. Here we go.
Adair County. Kerigan Brown from Greenfield, Iowa. She's a 17-year-old daughter of Tim and Tiffany Brown. She serves as her FFA chapter's president, helps advise the middle school FFA program, and plans to attend college to become an agriculture teacher. From Adair County, Kerigan Brown.
From Adams County, Emily Lauer from Corning, Iowa. She's the 21-year-old daughter of Kurt and Renee Lauer. She was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, but graduated from Northwest Missouri State in math. She has a heart for cows. From Adams County, Emily Lauer.
From Allamakee County, Natalie Byrnes. Natalie is from Waukon, Iowa. She's the 17-year-old daughter of Dan and Tracy Byrnes. She's involved in 4-H and FFA and in the family beef farm, and she enjoys sewing. From Allamakee County, Natalie Byrnes.
Representing Appanoose County is Chloe Potter. She's from Moulton, Iowa. She's the 16-year-old daughter of Dawson and Belinda Potter. She's a junior in high school, studying animal science in the future, and she shows cattle. From Appanoose County, Chloe Potter.
From Audubon County, Sienna Albertsen. She's from Audubon, Iowa, is the 18-year-old daughter of Mike and Crystal Albertsen. She's never missed a state fair and her county has the largest bull in the world. She enjoys playing video games. From Audubon County, Sienna Albertsen.
From Benton County, Izzie Birker. She's from Vinton, Iowa, and is the 16-year-old daughter of Scott and Jenny Birker. She's her FFA chapter reporter and shows Angus steers. She's also president of her 4-H club. From Benton County, Izzie Birker.
From Black Hawk County, please welcome Sofia Brown. Sofia's from Hudson, Iowa, and she's the 17-year-old daughter of Derek and Carrie Brown. She's FFA secretary and was adopted from Guatemala. She volunteers at her local hospital. From Blackhawk County, Sofia Brown.
From Boone County, Erin Barnes. Erin is from Boone, Iowa. She's the 18-year-old daughter of Jeff and Deanne Barnes. She's president of her 4-H club was a madrigal queen in high school, and loves her cat Annabeth. From Boone County, Erin Barnes.
From Bremer County, Lily Mayo. Lily is from Sumner, Iowa. She's the 18-year-old daughter of Dave and Stephanie Mayo. She loves the outdoors and is also the Bremer County Beef Queen. She's going to Coe College in Cedar Rapids this fall. From Bremer County, Lily Mayo.
From Buchanan County, Addison Gericke. She's from Winthrop, Iowa, and is the 16-year-old daughter of Daryl and Dawn Gericke. She raises bucket bottle calves and market beef. She was Linn County Beef Princess and enjoys spending time with her family. From Buchanan County, Addison Gericke.
From Buena Vista County, Madalyn Forbes. From Albert City, Madalyn is the 17-year-old daughter of Bruce and Carly Forbes. She's secretary of 4-H and FFA groups, shows sheep, cattle and rabbits, and will attend Northwest Missouri State for agriculture education in the future. From Buena Vista County, Madalyn Forbes.
Representing Butler County is Brooklyn Wix. Brooklyn is from Allison, Iowa. She's the 18-year-old daughter of Robert and Kristen Wix. She lives in a county with no stoplights. She loves to make people laugh and loves helping her grandparents on their exotic animal farm. From Butler County, Brooklyn Wix.
From Calhoun County, Ashley Westering. Ashley is from Manson, Iowa. She's the 18-year-old daughter of Don and Lisa Westering. She owns an in-home baking business, shows rabbits, and her favorite color is lavender. From Calhoun County, Ashley Westering.
From Carroll County, Molly Freese. Molly is from Carroll, Iowa. She's the 17-year-old daughter of Janet and Justin Freese. She's president of her 4-H and FFA groups, shows cattle and plans to attend school to become an eye doctor. From Carroll County, Molly Freese.
Representing Cass County is Natalie Behnken. She's from Massena and is the 17-year-old daughter of Blaine and Kim Behnken. She's the Cass County Beef Queen and represents the largest free county fair in Iowa. Her birthday is on New Year's Eve. Cass County, Natalie Behnken.
From Cedar County is Molly Chapman. Molly's from Tipton, Iowa. She's the 18-year-old daughter of Stacy Chapman and Brad Chapman. She was a People's Choice winner in the 2021 Governors Steer Show. She's passionate about caring for children and will attend Iowa State University this fall. From Cedar County, Molly Chapman.
From Cerro Gordo County, Hadley Shatek. She's from Mason City, Iowa, and is the 17-year-old daughter of Tim and Gail Shatek. She loves to bake macarons, not macaroons, macarons. She's a member of the state 4-H council and loves being the youngest of three sisters. From Cerro Gordo County, Hadley Shatek.
Representing Cherokee County, Carlynn Fuhrman. She's from Cleghorn, Iowa, and is the 17-year-old daughter of John and Valerie Fuhrman. She has a one-eyed dog named Willis, enjoys working the harvest this season and loves steer roping. From Cherokee County, Carlynn Fuhrman.
Chickasaw County is represented by Tori Bearman. She's from New Hampton, Iowa, and is the 18-year-old daughter of Jenny and Billy Bearman. She raises a 130 quarter horses on her family farm and plans to attend South Dakota State University in nursing. She's also her chapter FFA president. From Chickasaw County, Tori Bearman.
Representing the Clarke County Fair is Kelsey Benda. Kelsey is from Osceola. She's the 18-year-old daughter of Eddie and Carrie Benda. She shows Quarter Horses, works at the local vet clinic and will attend Iowa State University for vet medicine in the future. From Clarke County, Kelsey Benda.
Representing the Clay County Fair, Kamdyn Van Gelder. From Spencer, Iowa, Kamdyn is the 17-year-old daughter of Jay and Chantal Van Gelder. She's involved in competitive swim, shows 4-H cattle and rabbits, and is the 2023 Clay County Beef Ambassador. From Clay County, Kamdyn Van Gelder.
Our representative from the Clayton County Fair is Reagan Stelken. She's from Strawberry Point, Iowa, and is the 18-year-old daughter of Nick contitious Stelken. She plays sports, is going to Kirkwood Community College for nursing, and shows cattle and swine. From Clayton County, Reagan Stelken.
From the Clinton County Fair is Fayeth Henningsen. Fayeth is from DeWitt, Iowa. She's the 18-year-old daughter of Terry and Jennifer Henningsen. She's the national finalist for FFA agriculture education award, she shows sheep and goats and pigs, and is a professional of performing the moonwalk. From Clinton County, Fayeth Henningsen.
From Crawford County we have Payton Henningsen. Peyton is from West Side, Iowa. She's the 19-year-old daughter of Dean and Stephanie Henningsen. She's a beef cattle entrepreneur and serves as a bacon buddy coordinator for her county. She's attending Iowa State University this fall in animal science. From Crawford County, Payton Henningsen.
Representing the Dallas County Fair is Celia Kreifels. From Adel, Iowa, she is the 18-year-old daughter of Brian and Kristen Kreifels. She runs a community clothes closet and is a respite care provider. She's attending Iowa State University in the fall in human development. From Dallas County, Celia Kreifels.
Davis county is represented by Clara Smith. From Bloomfield, she's the 17-year-old daughter of Adam and Lindsey Smith. She'll be a senior at Davis County High School. She shows sheep and plans to attend Indian Hills Community College for agriculture business. Representing Davis County, Clara Smith.
Decatur County brings us Hailey Burton. From Davis City, Iowa, Hailey is the 18-year-old daughter of Tim and Erin Burton. She is involved in tumbling, 4-H and FFA president, and shows everything but poultry. From Decatur County, Hailey Burton.
Representing the Delaware County Fair, Dannielle Burkle. Dannielle is from Earlville, Iowa. She's the 18-year-old daughter of Dennis and Sherry Burkle. She shows Derek cattle and is going to NICC in the fall. She enjoys photography. Delaware County, Dannielle Burkle.
And from Des Moines County, Caroline Nealey. From Danville, Iowa, she's the 17-year-old daughter of Pat Neely and Jill Mutler. She's involved in 4-H, is secretary of her FFA chapter and is passionate about meeting new people. From Des Moines County, Caroline Nealey.
Representing Dickinson County is Amy Martin. She's from Milford, Iowa, and is the 18-year-old daughter of Rich and Brenda Martin. She shows goats, she's the FFA and 4-H president and she owns a photography business. From Dickinson County, Amy Martin.
From the Dubuque County Fair is Kayla Donovan. Kayla is from Farley, Iowa. She's the 18-year-old daughter of Bob and Cindy Donovan. She's involved in 4-H and FFA and enjoys showing cattle. She's attending the University of Wisconsin-Platteville in animal science. From Dubuque County, Kayla Donovan.
Emmet County sends us Emily Paulson. From Gruver, Iowa, she's the 17-year-old daughter of Greg and Lisa Paulson. She loves outdoor activities, is involved in golf and swimming, and enjoys walking her chickens on their leashes. From Emmett County, Emily Paulson.
Representing the Fayette County Fair is Anna Egan. She's from Westgate, Iowa, and is the 17-year-old daughter of David and Kelly Egan. She shows poultry, goats and beef. She is the district FFA officer and she loves hot beef sundaes. From Fayette County, Anna Egan.
From Floyd County, Josette Benning. She's from Charles City, Iowa, and is the 17-year-old daughter of Marvin and Ann Benning. She was a drum major for the Comet Marching Band, senior class president, she shows pigs and is a photographer. From Floyd County, Josette Benning.
Representing the Franklin County Fair is Kierra Dodd. From Ackley, Iowa, she's the 17-year-old daughter of Aaron and China Dodd. She's currently a district officer for FFA, she enjoys enjoys singing and playing guitar on her church worship team, and has traveled to Mexico where she actually turned 10 years old. From Franklin County, Kierra Dodd.
The Fremont County Fair Queen is Lillian Howe. Lillian is from Thurman, Iowa. She's the 16-year-old daughter of Steve and Christy Howe. She rides horses, loves spending time outside and is the only girl from her school who plays soccer. From Fremont County, Lillian Howe.
Representing the Great Jones County Fair is Emily Meyer. From Anamosa, Iowa, Emily is the 18-year-old daughter of Sally and Jamie Meyer. She's the president of the Iowa Junior Red Angus Association, is valedictorian of her graduating class, and will attend Iowa State University to study agriculture and rural policy. From the Great Jones County Fair, Emily Meyer.
Representing the Greene County Fair is Elise Badger. Elise is from Bagley, Iowa. She's the 16-year-old daughter of Brent and Jen Badger. She's our FFA chapter president, shows sheep and cattle nationally, and is certified Magna wave practitioner. From Greene County, Elise Badger.
From Grundy County, Cora Berends. From Parkersburg, Iowa, she's the 17-year-old daughter of Linda and Randy Berends. She serves as president of FFA chapter and enjoys showing sheep. Cora plans to attend Iowa State University to major in agriculture education. From Grundy County, Cora Berends.
From the Guthrie County Fair, Kiersten Knobbe. She's from Guthrie Center, Iowa. She's the 18-year-old daughter of John and Wanda Knobbe. She has qualified at least one state project to the state fair since sixth grade and that's a static project, she's obsessed with freshly squeezed lemonade from the state fair, and she will attend the University of Iowa to study biology with a future goal of being a cancer researcher.
From Hamilton County, Amanda Ostrem. Amanda is from Stanhope, Iowa. She's the 18-year-old daughter of Janie and Jared Ostrem. She will attend DMACC to study agriculture communications. She shows horses, pigs and dogs, and is a very competitive board game player. From Hamilton County, Amanda Ostrem.
Representing Hancock County is Sydney Tue. Sydney is from Britt, Iowa, and is the 17-year-old daughter of Chad and Michelle Tue. She comes from a drag racing family and has served as her dad's crew chief. Lolo Jones' late father was her next-door neighbor. She's got two spoiled French Bulldogs named Franny and Fred. From Hancock County, Sydney Tue.
From Hardin county is Kaci Bradshaw. Kaci is from Radcliffe, Iowa. She's the 18-year-old daughter of Danny Bradshaw and Andrea Ziebel. She's a member of the American and Iowa Junior Angus Association and is president of her 4-H club. She received her Iowa FFA degree this year. From Hardin County, Kaci Bradshaw.
From the Harrison County Fair is Marki Bertelsen. Marki is from Logan, Iowa. She's the 17-year-old daughter of Jamie Bertelsen. She loves to read and has been an avid reader from a young age. She's involved in 4-H and president of the County Council. She believes in having a strong work ethic and that kindness will take you far in life. From Harrison County, Marki Bertelsen.
From Henry County, Kalayna Durr. She is from New London, Iowa, and is the 18-year-old daughter of Tony and Anne Durr and Daniel Hester and Dina Bowker. She volunteered over 900 hours in high school and helps run the largest haunted house in southeast Iowa. She's president of her teen council. From Henry County, Kalayna Durr.
Representing the Mighty Howard County Fair is Ava Ferrie. Ava's from Cresco, Iowa. She's the 17-year-old daughter of Nick and Katie Ferrie. She won a 4-H leadership award in her county, her favorite movie is High School Musical 2 and she's from the mightiest fair in Iowa. From the Mighty Howard County Fair, Ava Ferrie.
From Humboldt County is Ava McIntire. Ava's from Humboldt, Iowa. She's the 17-year-old daughter of Josh and Stacy McIntire. She's co-president of the Humboldt FFA chapter, she shows horses competitively and she enjoys working on her family farm. From Humboldt County, Ava McIntire.
Representing the Ida County Fair is Margo McMillen. Margo's from Ida Grove, Iowa. She's the 17-year-old daughter of Rob and Theresa McMillen. She has two ducks, John B and JJ. She manages cross-country track and baseball and is involved in 4-H and FFA. From Ida County, Margo McMillen.
From Iowa County, Mariana Stevenson. She's from Parnell, Iowa, and is the 18-year-old daughter of Vaughn and Carla Stevenson. She has a black belt in Taekwondo and is president of the Parnell Peppers 4-H club. She was born in Bedford Pennsylvania. From Iowa County, Mariana Stevenson.
From Jackson County is Meghan Klemme. Meghan is from Preston, Iowa. She's the 18-year-old daughter of matineer and Klemme. She's attending Iowa State University and is the second oldest of four girls. She aspires to be an agriculture teacher. From Jackson County, Meghan Klemme.
Representing the Jasper County Fair is Jocelyn Harder. From Mingo, Iowa, Jocelyn is the 17-year-old daughter of Eric and Laura Harder. She aspires to hold a career in ag education and she participates in her county's tractor pull. Her plans are to attend Iowa State University in the fall. From Jasper County, Jocelyn Harder.
Representing the Jefferson County Fair is Briana Steele. From Lockridge, Iowa, Briana is the 17-year-old daughter of Jason and Kerry Steele. She is the sixth generation of family farmers. She enjoys mentoring young students in the community and is president of the Fairfield FFA chapter. From Jefferson County, Briana Steele.
And now I'm going to turn it over to my better half.
[Hailey] From Johnson County, Kelly Marshek. Kelly is from Iowa City, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Keith and Cami Marshek. She will attend Iowa State University to major in agriculture communications, she is her FFA chapter's president and she has been dancing since three years old. From Johnson County, Kelly Marshek.
From the Keokuk Expo, Autumn Belvel. Autumn is from Sigourney, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Chad and Emily Belvel. She will attend Kirkwood Community College to be a veterinarian technician. She is the president of her 4-H club and she enjoys showing cattle. From the Keokuk Expo, Autumn Belvel.
From the Keokuk County Fair, Chloe Zittergruen. Chloe is from Keswick, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Mark and Brooke Zittergruen. She serves as Iowa FFA Southeast District secretary, she plans to attend Iowa State after graduation for ag communications and she is the grand champion showmanship in flora culture at the Iowa State Fair this year. From Keokuk County, Chloe Zittergruen.
Representing Kossuth County, Emily Meyer. Emily is from Swea City, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Kim and Clint Meyer. She qualified for state softball for two years, she is attending Bethany Lutheran College to major in elementary education, and she loves to travel. From Kossuth County, Emily Meyer.
Representing Lee County, Olivia Tennant. Olivia is from Donnellson, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Tara and Gavin Sides and Chris Tennant. She was Miss Congeniality at Iowa's oldest county fair, she has been involved in the performing arts since she was four years old and she has attended the international science fair. From Lee County, Olivia Tennant.
From Linn County, Genevieve Scott. Genevieve is from Marion, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Sharon and Jeff Scott. Her favorite color is pink, she is involved in 4-H and in her spare time she loves to read cookbooks. From Linn County, Genevieve Scott.
Representing Louisa County, Jacie Hoeg. Jacie is from Wapello, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Chris and Kelly Hoeg. She is the 2022 State Fair Grand Champion Market Broiler, she was the president of her Wapello FFA chapter which is the only FFA chapter in the nation to run a PRCA Rodeo. From Louisa County, Jacie Hoeg.
From Lucas County, Sydney Cain. Sydney is from Chariton, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Kim and Dusty Cain. She has been showing pigs since four years old and she has been playing softball since eight. She is the president of her 4-H club and treasurer of FFA chapter. From Lucas County, Sydney Cain.
Representing Lyon County, Alexis Landis. Alexis is from George, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Fred and Christy Landis. She has made state four times in running, she works as a lifeguard and a CNA, and her and her dad do a month-long pranksgiving during the fall season. From Lyon County, Alexis Landis.
Representing Madison County, Emma Deppe. Emma is from Winterset, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Matt and Sarah Deppe. She has never missed an Iowa State Fair, she is a member of the Iowa 4-H reporters program and she is a Taylor Swift enthusiast. From Madison County, Emma Deppe.
Representing Mahaska County, Aliveah Brinegar. Aliveah is from Eddyville, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Tina and Aaron Wrist and Howard Brinegar. She has played the piano for 10 years, she graduated in the top five percent of her class, and she will be attending the University of Iowa to eventually work in the NICU. From Mahaska County, Aliveah Brinegar.
Representing Marion County, Carly Cox. She is from Pleasantville, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Greg and Brandy Cox. She met all the county fair queens when she was five years old, she is ambidextrous writing with both her right and left hand, and she is passionate about agriculture and becoming an ag events planner. From Marion County, Carly Cox.
Representing Marshall County, Lily Fischer. Lily is from Melbourne, Iowa. She is the 16-year-old daughter of Scott and Jaya Fischer. She is involved in 4-H and FFA. She is also involved in athletics and she loves to collect pins while traveling. From Marshall County, Lily Fischer.
Representing Mills County, Emerson Griffin. Emerson is from Glenwood, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Marty and Rebecca Griffin. She will attend Iowa State University to major in dietetics. She was the president of her 4-H club and she has a twin brother. From Mills County, Emerson Griffin.
From Mitchell County, Katelynn Huebsch. Katelynn is the 18-year-old daughter of John and Jen Huebsch. She was a qualifier at the first sanctioned Iowa girls state wrestling, she works at her county's sheriff office and she has a love for horses and barrel racing. From Mitchell County, Katelynn Huebsch.
Representing Monona County, Addison Halverson. She is from Onawa, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Jason and Christine Halverson. She has two cats. In third grade she won her class spelling bee and she is the best air hockey player in her family. From Monona County, Addison Halverson.
Representing Monroe County, Janelle Clark. Janelle is from Albia, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Larry and Patty Clark. She loves taking flowers to residents at her local nursing home, she has four nieces and one nephew, and her favorite thing at the Iowa State Fair is riding the giant slide in honor of her grandma Ruby. From Monroe County, Janelle Clark.
From Montgomery County, Cloie Bruce. Cloie is from Red Oak, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Scott and Jennifer Bruce. She loves being around kids, she shows cattle, goats and sheep on the national level, and she has a strong passion for the agricultural industry. From Montgomery County, Cloie Bruce.
Representing Muscatine County, Kiley Langley. Kiley is from Wilson, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Barry and Melanie Langley. She has a twin sister named Carly, she placed second overall in her county fair donkey races and she won third place at State Convention for AG sales and FFA. From Muscatine County, Kiley Langley.
Representing the National Cattle Congress, Emily Ingalls. Emily is from Van Horn, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Lauren and Patty Ingalls. She attends Iowa State University studying early childhood education and she loves showing dogs. Representing the National Cattle Congress, Emily Ingalls.
From O'Brien County, Ellen Hunt. Ellen is from Granville, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Steve and Julie Hunt. She is from Galen Catholic High School. She is the youngest of six children and she loves iced coffee. From O'Brien County, Ellen Hunt.
Representing Osceola County, Hallie Pedley. She is from Ocheyedan, Iowa. She is this 16-year-old daughter of David and Kristen Pedley. She has been dancing since she was three years old, she enjoys showing pigs and cattle, and she hopes to pursue an agriculture business career in the future. From Osceola County, Hallie Pedley.
Representing Page County, Allyson Johnson. Allyson is from New Market, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Kurt and Melissa Johnson. She is attending Columbia College to major in nursing, she shows horses, pigs and cattle, and she enjoys bowling and golfing. From Page County, Allyson Johnson.
Representing Palo Alto County, Adrianna Krieger Adrianna is from Terrell, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Tammy and Kyle Krieger. She has held office positions in 4-H and FFA, she shows breeding and market beef, and she plays volleyball at Iowa Lakes Community College. From Palo Alto County, Adrianna Krieger.
Representing Plymouth County, Abigail Tilberg. Abigail is from Le Mars, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Mark and Laureen Tilberg. She loves swimming, she has three amazing younger sisters, and she has aspirations to be a lawyer one day. From Plymouth County, Abigail Tilberg.
From Pocahontas County, Nicole Panbecker. Nicole is from Pocahontas, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Terry and Wendy Panbecker. She went to state in golf, she is a twin, and she exhibited projects at the state fair for the past six years. From Pocahontas County, Nicole Panbecker.
Representing Polk County, Emma Lihs. Emma is from Bondurant, Iowa. She is the 16-year-old daughter of Jason and Jenny Lihs. She plans to attend Iowa State University to major in agriculture education, she loves line dancing and she won the market turkey show at the state fair for two years in a row. From Polk County, Emma Lihs.
Representing Pottawattamie County, Jayden Bates. Jayden is from Oakland, Iowa. She is the 16-year-old daughter of Nick Bates. She is part of her family business of raising beef cattle, she serves as the vice president for her FFA chapter and she loves teaching kids about agriculture. From Pottawattamie County, Jayden Bates.
Representing Poweshiek County, Jordan Ranfeld. Jordan is from Malcolm, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Sean Ranfeld and Sarah Ranfeld. She restored a 30-20 tractor for the Iowa State Fair, she has a spoiled dog named Maggie, and she loves taking naps. From Poweshiek County, Jordan Ranfeld.
Representing Ringgold County, Aubrey Reed. Aubrey is from Mount Ayr, Iowa. She is the 16-year-old daughter of Deborah and Eric Dolacheck. She has aspirations to be a radiologist, she is the current historian of her FFA chapter and she often trips going up the stairs. From Ringgold County, Aubrey Reed.
From Sac County, Anna McCollough. Anna is from Wall Lake, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Eric and Angie McCollough. She has shown cattle for eight years, she plays two instruments, and she is the president of her FFA chapter. From Sac County, Anna McCollough.
From Scott County, representing the Mississippi Valley Fair, Cassi Paustian. She is from Bettendorf, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Shelly Paustian. She was a wrestler at Pleasant Valley High School, she shows cattle and plans to attend Iowa State for biosystems engineering and economics. From Scott County, representing the Mississippi Valley Fair, Cassi Paustian.
From Shelby County, Ryleigh Obrecht. Ryleigh is from Harlan, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Chuck and Renita Obrecht. She is the president of both her 4-H and FFA chapters, she shows cattle and swine, she will be attending Iowa State University in the fall to study agricultural business. From Shelby County, Ryleigh Obrecht.
Representing Sioux County, Anaka Dekkers. Anaka is from Ireton, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Tara and Dean Dekkers. She is one of seven children, she enjoys showing pigs and she loves to cook. From Sioux County, Anaka Dekkers.
Representing Story County, Callie Kohlwes Callie is from Colo, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Brad and Amy Kohlwes. She has a dog named Henry, she is the FFA president and she will attend DMACC in the fall for animal science. From Story County, Callie Kohlwes.
Representing Tama County, Adelyn Sienknecht. Adelyn is from Gladbrook, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Randy and Melissa Sienknecht. She attends GMG High School, she loves playing sports and she shows cattle and goats. From Tama County, Sienknecht.
Representing Taylor County, Amanda Ogle. Amanda is from Gravity, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of William and Laura Ogle. She plans to attend Iowa State to study environmental engineering. She shows goats, poultry and rabbits, and she is excited to meet her new niece in January. From Taylor County, Amanda Ogle.
Representing Union County, Marcey Bailey. Marcey is from Creston, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Greg and Mindy Bailey. She graduated from Lennox High School. She plans to attend Northwest Missouri State University in the fall to study ag business and animal science, and she enjoys showing steers with her family and friends across the country. From Union County, Marcey Bailey.
Representing Van Buren County, Emma Yoder. Emma is from Birmingham, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Vernon and Mary Yoder. She grew up in an Amish community until age 10. She is currently a waitress at Cantrell Fox Den and she will study real estate in the future. From Van Buren County, Emma Yoder.
Representing the Wapello County Expo, Heidi Wemmie. Heidi is from Eldon, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Steve Indiana Wemmie. She will attend senior year at Cardinal High School. She is also taking college courses to study precision farming. She loves mentoring children and showing chickens. From Wapello County Expo, Heidi Wemmie.
Representing the Wapello County Fair, Savanah Chickering. Savanah is from Eldon, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Corey and Jesse Chickering. She graduated from Cardinal High School. She enjoys being outdoors and she loves working with children. From the Wapello County Fair, Savanah Chickering.
Representing Warren County, Hanna Bedwell. Hanna is from New Virginia, Iowa. She is the 20-year-old daughter of Dawn and Tara Bedwell. She works at Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine. She has a dog named Norman and she loves the Iowa State Fair. From Warren County, Hanna Bedwell.
Representing Washington County,Taylor Bartholomew. Taylor is from Washington, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Scott and Michelle Bartholomew. She is a state officer for Business Professionals of America, she enjoys showing cattle, she also enjoys being involved in cross country, basketball and track. From Washington County, Taylor Bartholomew.
From Wayne County, Hallie Ingram. She is from Corydon, Iowa. She is the 16-year-old daughter of Scott Ingram and Jody Spragg. She is the FBLA president, she is the only mother-daughter duo with her mom to win queen in their county, and she placed third in 1A state softball. From Wayne County, Hallie Ingram.
Representing Webster County, Althea Ball, Althea is from Moreland, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Cara and Harley and Julie Ball. She loves attending the Iowa State Fair and has attended for 16 years. She loves to hunt and fish. She received two Iowa Master Angler awards for carp and bluegill. From Webster County, Althea Ball.
From West Pottawattamie County, Natalie Ausdemore. She is from Minden, Iowa. Natalie is the 17-year-old daughter of Tony and Heather Ausdemore. She is the president of her FFA chapter, she is a member of the State Jazz Band winners in class 1A, and she is the treasurer of her 4-H club. From West Pottawattamie County, Natalie Ausdemore.
Representing Winnebago County, Allison Rygh. Allison is from Scarville, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Bill and Lori Rygh. She is one of seven children. She is part of her high school's first graduating class and she loves to play instruments and sing. From Winnebago County, Allison Rygh.
Representing Winneshiek County, Brynn Storhoff. Brynn is from Decorah, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Brent and Bridget Storhoff. She is a member of the IGHSAU, she loves to read, and her favorite movie is Mamma Mia. From Winneshiek County, Brynn Storhoff.
From Woodbury County, Maria McGowan. Maria is from Sioux City, Iowa. She is the 17-year-old daughter of Chris and Kathleen McGowan. She was homeschooled until fifth grade, she has aspirations to serve in the military and she is involved in 4-H on the county, state and national level. From Woodbury County, Maria McGowan.
From Worth County, Sydney Schilling. Sydney is from Manly, Iowa. She is the 16-year-old daughter of Jean and Carl Schilling. She has been figure skating since five years old, she is on the state 4-H council and she inherited her grandfather's workshop where she built a home kitchen. From Worth County, Sydney Schilling.
Representing Wright County, Makayla Beisel. Makayla is from Clarion, Iowa. She is the 16-year-old daughter of Jason and Tamara Beisel. She received all American honors for the 2023 Junior Olympics track, she is a solo state dance champion and she has two ornery peacocks, Gregory and Rose. From Wright County, Makayla Beisel.
From the Wyoming Fair, Paige Peasley. Paige is from Wyoming, Iowa. She is the 18-year-old daughter of Sabrina Peasley and David Peasley. She is a senior in high school, she plays tenor saxophone and she is involved in her Art Club. From the Wyoming Fair. Paige Peasley.
Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you your Iowa State Fair 2023 County Fair Queens.
[Jerry] We do start off with one award.
I'm proud to be able to announce the 2023 winner of the Iowa State Fair Queen Alumni Award in honor of Julie Wolterman. I'm even prouder to have Julie's mom Judy here to hand out the award to this year's winner. Julie was a 1993 Iowa State Fair Queen and served as coordinator of this pageant for 19 years. We tragically lost Julie in the spring of 2022, much too early. She contributed so much to this queen competition, helping to make it what it is today. A number of former queens established a scholarship in Julie's honor to recognize someone who is an innovative thinker who strives to create a solution or meet a need not currently being addressed, has an entrepreneurial spirit, is a trailblazer in her community and is a creative person who encourages others to identify and make the most of opportunities. She overcomes and learns from setbacks and succeeds in a variety of settings. And the winner of the 2023 Julie Wolterman Award is from Guthrie County, Kiersten Knobbe. Congratulations Kiersten and thank you Judy.
Okay we'll come back out here. Try not to step on any dresses as I walk by. Before we get into the awards, we do have some important people to come up here and speak. And I'm going to ask Jeremy Parsons and Darwin Gaudian to please come up and I'll let them fight about who's going to speak first and I know they've worked out the details of what they're going to say. Darwin is the board president from Northwest Iowa.
[Darwin Gaudian] Thank you, Jerry. I don't know how you follow up something like this when you present this girls to us and then I've got to get up here and talk. So give these girls another round of applause.
Alrighty. This contest became special to me before I got on the Iowa State Fair board. I am the President of the O'Brien County Fair in Northwest Iowa. Small Fair and we are very proud of it. But in 2011 we had the Iowa State Fair Queen. Little O'Brien County, we didn't know what to do and it was amazing how we learned to share that with Paris and it was an amazing thing. So it's been special to us all the time and who would think tonight that she is sitting down there as a judge and I'm standing here as president of the Iowa State Fair board. So you don't know what's ever gonna happen and it's amazing what happened here and it's not even something you dream about. You girls. It's amazing. I'm proud to be from Iowa and can stand in front of a group of girls here. I'm not afraid of the future with a group of girls like you. So, congratulations. I want to have - I ask two things of you as you leave here this weekend.
Number one. Thank your mom and dads, grandma, grandpas, neighbors, whoever talked to you into being in 4-H or FFA and got you to where you are tonight. So, thank them. The next group I want you to thank is your fair boards. If there wasn't fair boards in your counties there wouldn't be a place for you to qualify and come up here, so thank them when you get home. So, good luck girl. You're all winners. One of you is going to change tonight, but you are all winners. Thank you.
[Jerry] Thank you, Darwin. Jeremy, first time.
[Jeremy Parsons] First time. Well it's good to be here. I've been CEO of the Iowa State Fair for five months so I know enough to be dangerous, but I think we're off to a pretty good start hree days in. Don't you think? I think we're off to a pretty good start. The Iowa State Fair is a celebration of all things good about the state of Iowa and tonight is another way we celebrate what is good about the state of Iowa by these wonderful young ladies behind me. However these ladies did not get here by themselves and if you're a parent of one of these young ladies or a guardian grandparent, would you stand up? You should be very very very proud because you have done great jobs raising these young ladies. So tonight we're going to celebrate with another state fair queen as a tradition continues here it's an honor to be with you and thanks for your support of the Iowa State Fair.
[Hailey] Thank you both, Jeremy and Darwin, for that lovely speech. Can we please give them another round of applause.
A lot of the things that happen today, and over the course of the next week of the best days ever, happens because of those two and the people who are on the Iowa State Fair board. We have a lot of support to be here and it is a privilege to be here at the Iowa State Fair.
Someone else who has had the privilege of representing the Iowa State Fair is our 2023 Iowa State Fair Queen. She has traveled miles and miles across this state to be at different counties to represent the Iowa State Fair. And something that is super special and super encouraging to know is that, I have gone to talk to her for a little bit, and she has really shown and has exemplified that there are a lot of wonderful and amazing young women representing their county fairs and county in Iowa. So, if you could please help me in welcoming home our 2023 Iowa State Fair Queen, Mary Ann Fox.
Your 2022 Iowa State Fair Queen, Mary Ann Fox.
[Mary Ann Fox] Welcome home is right. Like Hailey said, I have gotten the opportunity to travel across the state this summer visiting 76 counties and putting on over 12,000 miles.
And if I traveled to one of your counties and I had the opportunity to talk, you've probably heard what I'm about to say but I think it just rings so true that I just have to repeat it in front of the whole state.
And that is, I've always loved county fairs. I got to grow up at my county fair being there all five days 24/7. I never wanted to leave the fairgrounds, even to go and shower at home rather than in the interesting showers at the fairgrounds.
But county fairs are just so amazing because they are a giant showcase for those 4-H, FFA and community members to come together and show their talents. Whether it's the static projects, the animals or even some random contests that you have at your county fair, it's an event for your whole county and community to come together and have a great big celebration.
Now on Thursday, for opening ceremonies, I greatly loved what Jeremy Parsons had said. He mentioned how county fairs and fairs have a foundation of agriculture. And that is something that I always thought rang true, but to hear it from him and secretary Mike Naig, just made my heart melt. Because I feel like sometimes that's a little bit forgotten. That these fairs - we come together - there's rides, there's attractions, but we sometimes forget that foundation of agriculture.
The switching gears a little bit. When I was younger I would always come to the Iowa State Fair and I would see these county queens up here on stage, or in the trolley, and I thought to myself, "that would be really cool to be on stage one day with one of those queens."
But I didn't know what it meant to be a County Fair Queen. But through my time at my County Fair, and especially even visiting more of these county fairs, I say that a County Fair Queen not only represents your county fair, but the county, the events within it, what the people are like, that sense of community.
When I was going to some of these fairs I was scared. Seriously. Traveling across the state going to these random county fairs. But once I got there I felt at home, because of the sense of community at each of these county fairs.
Everyone comes together and helps one another, which is so great about these county fairs. And what they do for activities and events is unique to each and every one of them. But that doesn't make them compete against each other. Many times I went to a county fair and they mentioned how they were using some cages or benches from a different county because their numbers were so high, and they just needed more room.
These county fairs are not out here to compete for the best county fair. Even though we'll all argue that it's our own county fair that's the best county fair. Because it's all one big Fair family, and to be a County Fair Queen represents that fair family and that sense of community that you get at each of those county fairs.
Like I mentioned, I got to travel to all these county fairs and I got to meet a lot of these queens, a lot of the county fair board members, and a lot of random fair goers. And I just want to say a "thank you" to each and every one of you that I have talked to. Even if you may not even remember it. Because those help me get through this summer and grow as a person.
I want to thank the State Fair Board for all your support and encouragement. As I check another and another county fair off the list. The days got long, but their support was great.
I want to thank Mitchell County and the Mitchell County Fair board for helping me be who I am today. I didn't realize just how much support I had back home until I was out traveling the state. And lastly, I want to thank everyone that is here tonight and watching, for letting me carry on my love and passion for county fairs as being your 2022 Iowa State Fair Queen.
[Hailey] Let's give one more round of applause for our 2022 Iowa State Fair Queen, Mary Ann Fox. What an amazing representative of the Iowa State Fair.
[Jerry] It's time, isn't it? Before we get around to introducing the winners though, I want you to look in the program and look at the sponsor list. Because those are the people that help make this happen too. So please if you know those sponsors or if you have the opportunity to frequent those sponsors or purchase their items please do so.
I also want to recognize Skeffington's Formal Wear for their donation of tuxedos for our escorts this evening.
And Boesen the Florist for donating beautiful bouquets. Also the queen week pageant is sponsored by Spirulux by Nature Hill. They provided gifts for all queen contestants at the hotel and have a larger gift bag for the winners. So, thank you to them.
I've got to dispose of some of this paper, it's just getting too much.
We're going to start off with our winner of the Personality Plus Award. The winner of this award will get a $500 scholarship from the Iowa State Fair, a plaque from the Iowa State Fair, a $200 gift card from an anonymous donor and a flower bouquet from Boesen the Florist.
I see everybody is all lined up and ready over there, so let me open the envelope and I'll tell you who Personality Plus winner is. That one, by the way, is voted on by the other queens. So it's pretty unique.
Personality Plus in 2023 is from Cedar County, Molly Chapman.
[Hailey] Next we will award our Outstanding Leadership. This is based on someone who has exemplified what it means to be a leader and an active person involved in their own community. This person will receive an $800 scholarship from the Iowa State Fair, a plaque from the Iowa State Fair, a $250 gift card from an anonymous donor, a flower bouquet from Boesen the Florist.
Outstanding Leadership award goes to Woodbury County, Maria McGowan.
[Jerry] Now we'll go to third runner up. The third runner-up receives a $500 scholarship from the Iowa State Fair, a plaque from the Iowa State Fair, a $200 gift card from an anonymous donor, and a floral bouquet from Boesen the Florist.
And our third runner-up for 2023 is from Washington County, Taylor Bartholomew.
[Hailey] Our second runner-up will receive a $1,000 scholarship from the Iowa State Fair, a plaque from the Iowa State Fair, a $250 gift card from an anonymous donor, and a flower bouquet from Boesen the Florist.
Our second runner-up is Fremont County, Lillian Howe.
[Jerry] The first runner-up is an important one, because should anything prevent the lady chosen as queen from fulfilling her responsibilities, this is the person who would step in.
The first runner-up receives a $1,500 scholarship from the Iowa State Fair, a plaque from the Iowa State Fair, a $300 gift card from an anonymous donor and a floral bouquet from Boesen the Florist.
Your first runner-up is from Muscatine County, Kiley Langley.
[Hailey] And now the moment that we have all been waiting for.
Your 2023 Iowa State Fair Queen will receive a $5,000 scholarship from Branstad Reynolds Trust, a $3,000 scholarship from the Iowa State Fair, a $1,000 scholarship from Dog House Concessions, a trophy from the Iowa State Fair, a crown and sash also from the Iowa State Fair, diamond earrings from B Shannon Designs, $600 gift card from an anonymous donor, a flower bouquet from Boesen the Florist, cowboy boots from Long Creek Outfitters, an Iowa State Fair brick from the Iowa State Fair Blue Ribbon Foundation.
Your 2023 Iowa State Fair Queen hails from Henry County, Kalayna Durr.
Ladies and gentlemen, your 2023 Iowa State Fair Queen Kalayna Durr.
[Jerry] Ladies and gentlemen, that concludes the activities for this evening. You'll be able to see her walking around the fairgrounds for the next week. And when you do, please stop and introduce yourself. Tell her, "hi."
Thank you all for coming, for your support of this event. Don't forget to watch on Iowa PBS, all of the fair specials this week.
[Announcer] Funding for Fair 2023 is brought to you by Friends the Iowa PBS Foundation and by:
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My name is Cara Hayden. I'm super passionate about animal welfare. There's a lot of pigs that rely on me to train their caregivers. What we focus on in our training is encouraging our caregivers to understand that what they think and what they do matters."