A hot July afternoon was the setting for the opening celebrations for the 161st Annual Clermont County Fair. The fair parade through Owensville drew a large crowd as did the crowning of the 2010 King and Queen Roger Sannes and Olivia Enriquez.
The temperature peaked in the 90′s and many of the parade floats rewarded the crowds lining the streets by spraying them with water from squirt guns or handing out water in bottles.
The parade lasted for more than an hour and many of the spectators followed the last floats into the fairgrounds to take advantage of free admission.
The 2009 royalty were presented and Queen Brittany Bayne gave a speech. The 2009 King, Cody McConnell, was away on an internship in Texas, but he did prepare a speech and it was read by his close friend and fellow 2009 king candidate Scott Benjamin.
A total of 39 king and queen candidates were interviewed for the 2010 crowns. There were two final candidates for King. J.T. Carpenter and Roger Sannes. The finalists for queen were Shelby Church, Olivia Enriquez, Hailee Lewis, Samantha Manning, and Elizabeth Vandergrift.
The finalists were each asked a final question on stage before the judges retired to make their final decisions. Each candidate recited the 4-H pledge and explained which of the four H's, head, heart, hands, and health, was the most important.
Sannes and Enriquez, who were later crowned King and Queen, separately agreed that heart was the most important of the four.
Sannes said having a love for what you do and the compassion for younger 4-Hers is very important. He emphasized looking up to the senior 4-H members and mentoring the younger members.
Enriquez said having a passion for 4-H and for the projects is essential to success.
"If you don't have heart in what you do you can't reach your potential," Enriquez said. "You have to love what you do."
Annually the court position with the highest number of candidates is the princess seat, and this year was no exception. From the 14 finalists, Leah Wolfer was crowned. Ricky Vandergrift was crowned the 2010 fair Prince.
Representatives from each of the agricultural industries were also named at the ceremony. The 2010 Beef Queen is Kelsey Bailey, the Caprine Representative is Sophia Enriquez, the Equine Representative is Brittney Taylor, the General Projects Representative is Mariah Messink, the Small Animal Representative is Amanda Keenan, and the Swine Representative is Kayla Kelly.
The Clermont County Fair continues through Saturday. Tonight the demolition derby begins at 7:30 p.m. Friday night is local truck and tractor pull and Saturday night the fair concludes with the demolition derby.