Sarah Hazenfield, 19, and Joshua Ison, 17, were crowned king and queen at the Clermont County Junior Fair Royalty Contest.
“It’s a dream come true,” said Ison. “I have always wanted to be the junior fair king. In 1975, my father Zach was crowned junior fair king; this has been a special moment for my entire family.”
In ceremonies held on the fairgrounds July 23, the king and queen were selected after each candidate was given the opportunity to introduce themselves and spontaneously answer a final question.
Hosted by Junior Fair organizer Heather Taulbee, the question posed to the candidates was “What was the most important thing that they have learned in their years of 4-H and FFA, and how that would help them in life.”
There were six candidates for queen and six candidates for king.
After the judges deliberated, Hazenfield and Ison were announced the winners.
Their duties as the junior fair king and queen will be to work the livestock shows, announce the winners, hand out awards, run the livestock sales, and be a visible presence at the fair throughout the week.
Hazenfield, who lives in Felicity and is studying veterinary medicine at Morehead State University, has been a 4-H and FFA member for 16 years.
“My most important role as queen is to be a role model for the younger kids,” said Hazenfield. “It gives them the opportunity to ask questions about 4-H and gain interest at a very early age. 4-H has been the most rewarding and meaningful thing that I have ever done in my life. It has given me so much. The skills that I have learned are invaluable.”
Ison, who is a senior at Batavia High School has been involved with 4-H and FFA for nine years, agrees.
“I am always encouraging young people to get involved with 4-H and FFA,” he said. “It teaches you discipline and responsibility. You learn skills through experience that you just cannot get anywhere else. I have made many friends over the years and I feel blessed to be this year’s king. I am loving every minute of it.”
Rounding out the 2006 Junior Royalty Court were Princess Audrey McCartney, Prince Spencer Taylor, Beef Queen Katie Jarman, Caprine Representative Anna Wright, Sheep Representative Elizabeth Little, Small Animal Representative Terry Keenan, Swine Representative Ashley Willis, Equine Representative Sarah Hazenfield (also crowned queen), and General Projects Representative Maria Folzenlogen.
Heather Taulbee said that all the candidates should be commended and that their sportsmanship and dedication should be an inspiration for everyone.