6/11/2017 6:02:00 PM Three finalists selected for title of 2017 Jackson County Fair Queen
The three finalists for the 2017 Jackson County Fair Queen were named at a pageant conducted Saturday evening, June 10 at the Jackson County Extension Office. Pictured (from the left) are: Haley Jo Sexton, Kylee Castle, and Lauren Gardner. The name of the queen and order of attendants will be announced when all three are crowned on Sunday evening, July 16, at the Jackson County Fair. (Telegram Photo By Red Thompson, Jr.)
The 2017 Jackson County Fair Queen has been chosen, but her identity will be kept a secret until the fair's Opening Ceremonies about five weeks in the future.
The three finalists for this year's fair queen are Kylee Castle, Lauren Gardner, and Haley Jo Sexton, who were selected during a pageant conducted last Saturday evening, June 10 at the Jackson County Extension Office near Jackson.
The pageant determined the queen and the order of the two attendants, but that very important piece of information will not be announced until the official crowning, which is scheduled for Sunday, July 16 at 5 p.m. on the opening night of the Jackson County Fair. The judging results will be kept in a sealed envelope at Ohio Valley Bank in Jackson until the crowning ceremony.
Haley Jo Sexton is the 18-year-old daughter of Jamey and Misty Sexton. She is a 13-year member of the Country Classics 4-H Club, where she has held the offices of President for three years, Vice President for two years, and Treasurer for one year. Haley's current 4-H projects include Market Hogs and Market Chickens. She is a four-year member of the Junior Fair Board, and a two-year youth representative for the Livestock Committee. She is a graduate of Jackson High School and participated in the CCP+ Program her senior year.
Lauren Gardner is the 16-year-old daughter of Jessica and Terry Gardner. She is a seven-year member of the Barnyard Rascals 4-H Club, a four-year member of the Too Hot To Trot 4-H Club and a two-year member of Jackson FFA. She is also a three-year member of the Junior Fair Board, a two-year member of Junior Leaders, a three-year youth representative for the 4-H Horse Committee, has been a camp counselor for two years and is the 2016 Vice President for the Jackson FFA chapter. She will be a senior at Jackson High School where she is in Marching Band, Wind Ensemble, Tri-M, Equine Judging team, Forestry Judging team and Youth Leadership Association. Lauren's projects this year are Market Goats and Horses.
Kylee Castle is the 16-year-old daughter of Shasta Murphy. She has been involved in 4-H for nine years, and is in the Franklin Guys and Gals 4-H Club. She is also involved in the Jr. Fair Board, Jr. Leaders, is a Camp Counselor, 2017 Camp Ambassador, and a youth representative for 4-H Advisory Council. Kylee's projects include Market Rabbits and various General Food Projects. She is a junior at Jackson High School, where she plays varsity soccer, track, and is in the Leos Club. She is also a YMCA volunteer and helps with rookie, TOPS, and youth soccer programs.
The pageant was emceed by long-time 4-H member Jessica Taylor. She is a recent graduate of Ohio State University and is an alumna of Oak Hill High School. During the pageant, the candidates were asked questions about the fair and the responsibilities connected with it. In the next round, they selected a word out of a basket and gave not only their view of what the word meant to them, but also how they apply it in their lives. The final part of the contest was a question on what the world would be like without social media.
The answers were interesting with most centering on social media being used to bash others or being a way to connect with other people outside the county or family members living far away. Taylor thanked everyone for competing. The six-girl field of contestants also included Grace Fulton, Josie Hackney and Erika Reed.
The new royalty will replace the 2016 royalty members: Queen Faith Miller, First Attendant Allison Moore and Second Attendant Haley Frazier.
Saturday's pageant completes the pre-fair royalty contests for the Jackson County Fair as pageants were held the previous weekend for the grade-level attendants and for the Little Miss and Little Mister positions.
Abigail Meldick is the grades 8-9-10 attendant, Elizabeth Allison is the grades 6-7 attendant and Jasmine Clarkson is the grades 4-5 attendant. Also, Katie Ross is the Little Miss Jackson County Fair and Sam Gentry is the Little Mister Jackson County Fair.
The 2017 Jackson County Fair is set for July 14-22 at the longtime fairgrounds site off Driving Park Road in Wellston. Once again, the Jackson County Fair Board is putting together a busy and varied schedule of activities. One of the highlights is sure to be a concert on Saturday evening, July 22, featuring Nashville recording artist Clay Walker. For more information on the fair, log on the Jackson County Fair-Ohio website and check out its Facebook page.