SIDNEY — Evan Burden and Morgan Ely were crowned the 2019 Shelby County Fair king and queen during Sunday’s annual contest.
Contestants who participated in the contest had to explain what they have learned in 4-H that they will use later in their life. They also picked a word from a hat and explained how that word applied to their 4-H experience.
For Burden — who picked the word “failure” he’s learned that is an important part of 4-H.
“Failure is the next step of being kind of good at something,” Burden said to the panel of judges and the crowd. “I’ve taken my failures and made them into learning experiences.”
Burden, 18, is the son of Jill and Tim Burden, of Sidney.
Sacrifice has been essential in Ely’s time participating in 4-H. Sacrificing time and parts of the high school experience are necessary to make space for projects and get them done.
“Sacrifice will get you where you need to be,” Ely said.
Ely, 18, is the daughter of Mike and Dawn Ely, of Sidney.
While waiting for the judges to select the new king and queen, Sally Behr, Sondra Pence and Jennie Wooddell were inducted into the Shelby County 4-H Hall of Fame.
Behr, who found her love for sewing at age six and would often sneak to the sewing machine in her home and sew her dolls new clothes while her mother fed chickens and gather eggs, has been part of the 4-H organization for more than 40 years. Advising countless youth in the Merry Mod Makers 4-H Club has satisfied her lifelong desire to teach, something that was unattainable during her years growing up. She has supported her family throughout their time in 4-H, from her three daughters to her nine grandchildren. To this day, Behr can be found helping youngsters work on crochet projects and teaching and working with club members on ceramics projects during the spring. Helping her mentees find their talents and develop their skills makes her feel that her time is well spent.
Pence, a member of a five generation 4-H family, started her time in 4-H as a member of the Merry Anna Stitchers 4-H Club in 1953. After leaving the club as a member, she returned as an advisor until some point in the late 1960s. Her three children and now her grandchildren have been mentored by her, taking on an array of projects throughout their 4-H years and often participating in late night sewing marathons, crafting fair booth displays, and more often than not, a trip to the state fair. For the past 20 years, she has served as an advisor of the Paw Prints 4-H Club, instilling and helping develop not only competing youth, but their dogs, with skills that extend beyond the county fair. The greatest reward for her dedication to 4-H is watching her mentees succeed and grow, taking the lessons they learn in 4-H and carrying them into their everyday life.
Wooddell has been a participant in 4-H since she was 11 years old. As a founding member of the Trail Riders 4-H club, she is still with the club today. She became a 4-H advisor in 1972, and since that time has helped form the Equine Improvement Organization (EIO) to purchase equipment for the horse area and improve the barns. She is currently a member of the Horse Advisory Committee and the Reverse Raffle Committee. Wooddell helps organize the 4-H horse clinic and schedules guest speakers and trainers. Her work with the Shelby County 4-H Club and mentoring in 4-H made a lasting impression on her three sons Jeremy Hatfield, Rob Wooddell and Jordan Wooddell, who are all active with the Trail Riders 4-H Horse Club and Shelby County 4-H Shooting sports to this day. Wooddell was recognized at the 2019 Ohio 4-H Conference in Columbus for serving 45 years as a 4-H volunteer, and will be recognized for years to come at Shelby County as a receipient of the Shelby County 4-H Hall of Fame Award.
Following Hall of Fame inductions, judges returned with their decision on the king and queen candidates.
Macalla Huelskamp, 17, daughter of Jeff and Laura Huelskamp, 17, of Fairlawn, was crowned Miss Congeniality. Denton Homan, 16, son of Fred and Billie Homan, of Botkins, was crowned Mr. Congeniality.
Cade Allison, 16, son of Dean and Cari Allison, of Maplewood, and Allison Roush, 18, daughter of Karen and Darrin Ike, of Sidney, were crowned the second runners-up.
Denton Homan and Jessica Monnier, 18, daughter of Paul and Doris Monnier, of Houston, were crowned the first runners-up.
Ely said that she was motivated by the chance to represent Shelby County around fairs across Ohio. At the end of the day, she’s where she’s at because of her determination to reach her goals.
“During my speech I talked about how my lambs dragged me across my yard. Usually people tend to give up, but I kept going for it and pushing myself, and now here I am.”
Also competitng in the queen contest weere Emma Delaet, 17, daughter of Chad and Ann Delaet, of Russia; Summer Oaks, 16, daughter of Rose Riethman, of Anna; Emily Holt, 18, daughter of Harvey and Theresa Holt, of Botkins; Marian Shaffer, 16, daughter of Eric and Amanda Shaffer, of Jackson Center; and Jessica Batton, 17, daughter of John and Kristen Batton, of Sidney.
Reach the writer at 937-489-9621