SIDNEY — Chare Jeffries, 17, daughter of Amy and Randy Essar, of Anna, and Dexter Ingle, 17, son of Nicole and Neil Ingle, of Houston, will reign as over the 2018 Shelby County Fair as queen and king.
They were crowned following a pageant at the fair, Sunday, July 22.
Jeffries bested seven other contestants. Ingle had two challengers. The king and queen each won $150 cash prizes.
Jeffries, a 2018 Houston High School graduate and a member of the Houston Livestock 4-H Club, shows hogs at the county fair. She sits on the Junior Fair Board and participated in 4-H’s Citizenship Washington Focus program. At school, she was a member of FFA and the National Honor Society and played basketball and volleyball. She plans to attend Ohio State University Agricultural Training Institute in Wooster to study agricultural communications.
Ingle is a 2018 graduate of Houston High School and a member of Scissors to Sheep 4-H Club. Active in Houston’s FFA, he played basketball and was also in the band. He plans to attend Bowling Green State University to study early childhood education.
First runners-up, who got $50 each, were Sarah Monnier, 18, daughter of Doris and Paul Monnier, of Houston, and Evan Burden, 17, son of Jill and Tim Burden, of Sidney.
Second runners-up were Morgan Ely, 17, daughter of Dawn and Mike Ely, of Sidney, and Joshua Madden, 16, son of Marcia and Douglas Madden, of Anna. They won $30 prizes.
Burden and Ely were voted by their fellow contestants to be Mr. and Miss Congeniality, and each received an additional $20 for the honor.
Contestants had met with judges for interviews in the week preceding the onstage pageant. Sunday, they paraded in formal wear and answered questions put to them by 2017 royalty Jarrett Yinger and Grace Homan.
Jeffries was asked to discuss the biggest obstacle she had to overcome in 4-H.
“When I was younger, I was petrified to talk in front of people,” she said. “I’m going into agricultural communications. If you’re going to communicate with people, you have to go up to them.” It was 4-H participation as a leader that got her to get over the fear.
“Now I’m able to talk to people. I cannot be more thankful for that,” she said.
“How will you promote 4-H in the future?” Homan asked Ingle.
“When I become a teacher, I will ask local 4-H leaders to come in and talk to kids about 4-H. That’s how I got involved in third grade,” he said.
In a later round, Ingle theorized that it was the chicken, rather than the egg, that came first.
“Evolution,” he said was the answer. “The chicken evolved from bacteria, laid an egg and it went on from there.”
Jeffries got to name three people she’d like to invite to a dinner party. She didn’t hesitate at all in naming John F. Kennedy, Elvis and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
“I want to know where they got their drive, how they kept going, why and how they did it all,” she said.
The judges were Amy Cobb, of Community Insurance Group; Brent Clinehens, of Farm Service Agency; Deb McDermott, director of Sidney-Shelby Workforce Partnership; Marian Spicer, director of the Shelby County Community Foundation; and Shelby County Sheriff John Lenhart.
Awards were donated by Pioneer Rural Electric Cooperative and the 4-H Foundation.
Other contestants were Allison Roush, 17, daughter of Karen and Darrin Ike, of Sidney; Katelynn Garber, 16, daughrer of Michelle and Eric Garber, of Houston; Emma Delaet, 16, daughter of Ann and Chad Delaet, of Russia; Emily Bohman, 18, daughter of Jennifer and Steve Bohman, of Russia; and Samantha Gaerke, daughter of Judie and Jason Gaerke, of Russia.
Reach the writer at 937-538-4824.