9/12/2017 3:41:00 PM Coal Festival called one of the best Site shift buoys annual hometown event
After much anticipation, the order of next year’s Coal Festival Royal Court was announced near the end of this year’s festivities. Shown above from the left are 2018 Coal Festival First Attendant Madison McCormick, Queen Jenna Secrest and Second Attendant Jamiee Bixler. (Telegram Photos By Phillip Buffington)
OHillCo Society President Aaron Dupree (right) and committee member Ryan Pelletier are shown above announcing the winners of numerous awards during the final night of the 2017 Wellston Coal Festival.
By Pete Wilson & Phillip Buffington Telegram Staff
Another Wellston Coal Festival is in the history books and the 2017 edition will likely go down in the books as one of the very best.
Operations went fairly smoothly, better weather could not have been ordered, and a slight change in location seemed to make a huge and positive difference.
The change involved shifting the festival's heart one block from Ohio Avenue to Railroad Avenue and the Pride Park area. The Hozer's Pizza Stage was located just north of The Depot. Pride Park itself was better utilized as a location for some of the booths and picnic tables were brought in to provide plenty of temporary seating. The Depot, which is leased by the Coal Festival, once again hosted the Art Show in one section, and for the first time, the Quilt, Needlework and Craft Show in the other section.
"We are very excited with the way the new layout and changes worked for the festival," Festival President Aaron Dupree told The Telegram. "We received many wonderful comments and appreciate all the support we received. The Ohillco Society will continue to do its best to improve the festival and the experience for the community."
The shift to Railroad Avenue was made possible by the installation of electric service to that area, in order to service vendors which required electricity on the street or in the park.
"I want to give special mention to Joe Mahle and Ryan Souders for the time they put into the electric move," Dupree added. "It was a big job and they ran with it and it all worked out amazingly in the end."
Dupree also wanted to thank the board members of the Ohillco Society for their volunteer work.
"I can't say enough about them all and how much I appreciate all that they do," he said.
Royal Transition To 2018
The transition to the 2018 Coal Festival began at the end of the 2017 festival, as the last order of business on Saturday night was the announcing and crowning of the new royalty members.
The 2018 Wellston Coal Festival Queen is Jenna Secrest. The first attendant is Madison McCormick and the second attendant is Jamiee Bixler.
Jenna Secrest is the 16-year old daughter of Tami and Steve Secrest. She is in 11th grade at Wellston High School. Her special honors include Believe in Ohio Business Plan and Superintendent's List. Her hobbies and interests include working at Dairy Queen, hiking, art, reading and meeting new people. She previously stated she would like to be the Coal Queen for "an opportunity to make a difference in my community while having fun and meeting new people".
Madison McCormick is the 17-year-old daughter of Jessie and Tim Lambert and Jeff McCormick. She is a senior at Wellston High School. Madison's honors and awards include All Academic TVC, Superintendent's List all three years of high school and varsity letter in cheerleading. Her hobbies and interests include cheerleading, softball and hanging out with her little brother Mason.
Jamiee Bixler is the 17-year-old daughter of Tonja and Jeff Bixler. She is a junior at Wellston High School. Jamiee's special honors and awards include National Honor Society, varsity cheerleader, Superintendent's List for her sophomore year and Jr. Fair Board member. Her hobbies and interests include cheerleading, color guard, track and camping with her family.
The 2018 Junior Miss Coal Queen is Camryn Womeldorf. The first attendant is Kate McClain and the second attendant is Khloe Shotts. Camryn Womeldorf is the 11-year-old daughter of John and Jennifer Childers and Adam and Brittany Womeldorf and is in the 6th grade at Wellston Middle School. Kate McLain is the 12-year-old daughter of Vern and Julie McLain and is in the 7th grade at Wellston Middle School. Khloe Shotts is the 11-year-old daughter of Dohn and Jody Shotts and is in the 6th grade at Wellston Middle School.
The 2018 Little Miss Coal Queen is Emma Figgins. The first attendant is Aarolyn Dupree and the second attendant is MacKenzee Dugan. Emma Figgins is the 9-year-old daughter of Stacy and Chris Smith and Tom and Tina Figgins and is a 4th-grader at Wellston Intermediate School. Aarolyn Dupree is the 9-year-old daughter of Aaron and Kylia Dupree and is a 4th-grader at Wellston Intermediate School. MacKenzee Dugan is the 9-year-old daughter of Alicia Dugan and is a 4th-grader at Wellston Intermediate School.
Parade Awards, Other Honors
Saturday night's Grand Finale Parade featured co-grand marshals John and Connie Pelletier, the Wellston Marching Rockets serving as the host band, and, of course, the 2017 royalty members.
Reigning over the festival were: Queen Briley Lusk along with First Attendant Morgan Weiker and Second Attendant Baisley Barstow. The 2017 Junior Queen was Abigail Arthur, the First Attendant was Olivia Hagerty and the Second Attendant was Chloe Wilbur. The 2017 Little Queen was Ella Hutchinson, the First Attendant was Shelby Smith, and the Second Attendant was Lindsey McCormick.
Following the Grand Finale Parade, various awards, honors, recognitions and contest winners were announced.
Awards: (Bands) - 1. Vinton County High School Marching Band; 2. Clay High School Marching Band; 3. Christian Life Academy.
(Twirlers) - 1. The Show Dolls; 2. Eclipse; 3. The Jacksonettes.
(Floats) - 1. Fallen Heroes; 2. Saints Peter and Paul; 3. Operation Christmas Child.
(Booth Decorations) - 1. JCEMS; 2. Grace Baptist Church; 3. Wellston Main Street organization.
Lockard Insurance won first place for Window Decorations.
Linda Clark presented the Spirit Award, which she started last year in honor of her late mother, Mary Ousley, to Lambert Auto.
The Ohillco Society presented Community Improvement Awards (for the dedication and commitment to improve the appearance and the future of Wellston) to: Atomic Credit Union; Piggly Wiggly; The Rusted Barn; Joseph Nicholas and Compel Ministries; Domino's Pizza; and Fruth Pharmacy.
Sponsors and Friends of the Festival: (Queens Day) - Adena Health System; General Mills; WesBanco; Rumpke; The Store; The Milton Banking Company; Wellston Rotary; Peoples Bank and Insurance; Bellisio Foods; Days Inn; Quality Inn; Lockard Insurance Agency; Kroger; MedFlight; Cotner, Cooley, Clark & Sharp, LLC; Gem Beverages; Jenkins Memorial Health Facility; Atomic Credit Union; Jerry's Do-It Center; Ohio Valley Bank; Donna Summers Realty; Derrow Insurance; Lackey's PDQ; Vinton County National Bank; McDonald's; Ferrell Gas; The Detour; Shannon and Stephanie Weber; American Legion Post 371; Waugh Insurance Agency; LaRosa's; Budweiser; Wellston City Schools; Wellston Fire Department; Wellston Police Department; the University of Rio Grande/Rio Grande Community College; and Ray's Appliance.
Karaoke Contest - Lyndsey Houser took first place, Jessica Patrick took second place and Sarah Stephens took third place.
Dessert Contest - Mary Ann Scurlock of Hamden entered the first-place Cinnamon Cupcakes. Second place went to Betty Jenkins of Wellston for her Cream Puff Cake. Third place went to Polly Arnold for her Apple Pie.
Art Show - W.F. Keck won Best-of-Show honors while Beth Clingan captured the Sharon Davis Stubbe Memorial Award. In the youth division, Hadley Fain won the Best-of-Show honors.
Quilt, Needlework and Craft Show - Carol Salmons was the Best-of-Show winner in the Quilt division and Andrea Schoonmaker in the Needlework division.
Car Show - The Best-of-Show award went to Rick Doles for his 1969 Plymouth Roadrunner. Also, the Mason's Choice award went to Don Kinnison for his 1937 Terraplane. The Black Diamond members present this award in honor of one of its esteemed members, the late Dan Lockard, Jr.
My School Color Run - The event is held annually to raise money for the fund drive to build a new track facility at the Wellston High School campus. Rob Ervin was the overall winner and the top male runner while Madison Nadler was the top female runner.
Pet Show - Winners in the various categories included: Katie Keller and Bear, Kristin Johnson and Koby, Lisa Barnett and Bandit the pot-bellied pig, Beth Dye and Heidi, Angela Dye and Chewy, Shayla Rice and Tidbit, and Anna Baker and Angel.