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Jackson crowned Tama County Fair Queen

2019-20 Tama County Fair Queen Katelyn Kucera, 2021 Tama County Fair Princess Hope Werner, 2021 Tama County Fair Queen Frances Jackson, Fair Queen Candidate Ellie Behrens and Fair Queen Candidate Rachel Silhanek. -- Darvin Graham/NT Telegraph

The Crowning of the 2021 Tama County Fair Queen took place on Tuesday evening, July 13, at the Tama County 4-H Fairgrounds in Gladbrook.

Mistresses of Ceremonies for the evening were 2019 Tama County Fair Queen, Katelyn Kucera, and 2018 Tama County Fair Queen, Taylor Lekin.

Candidates for the 2021 competition were Ellie Behrens, daughter of Chris and Andrea Behrens of Clutier, Frances Jackson, daughter of Matt and Ann Jackson of Garwin, Rachel Silhanek, daughter of Roy and Sarah Silhanek of Tama and Hope Werner, daughter of Eric and Michelle Werner of Toledo.

The girls began the process with applications due June 1st. A workshop was held later in June at the State Bank of Toledo Community Room in Toledo to prepare the girls for judging. Convertibles provided by the Shriners, carried the girls in the Corn Carnival parade.

Judging took place on July 11 at Spanky’s Restaurant in Gladbrook. Judges were Jean Firman from Waterloo, Julia Campbell from Ames and Tara Liston from Grundy Center. The girls took part in a group discussion led by 2019 Tama County Fair Queen, Katelyn Kucera, daughter of Bruce and Kathy Kucera of Traer. They were also interviewed individually. After a short break, a wonderful luncheon was served by the Wolfcreek Whirlwinds 4-H Club.

Before the luncheon, the girls gave a 3-5 minute speech that they prepared from a list of choices provided by the committee. The girls and their guests were excused and the judges retired to make their decision. Their choices for queen and princess were sealed in envelopes that were opened at the crowning ceremony.

2018 queen, Taylor Lekin welcomed the crowd of spectators and thanked those who made the evening possible. Sponsors included Tama County Fair Board, State Bank of Toledo, Angie Princehouse, Tama Florist, Ultimate Image, Peace Church of Gladbrook, Wolfcreek Whirlwinds 4-H Club, Farmers Savings Bank & Trust-Traer, Country Hair Creations/Barb Wieben, Gladbrook Theater, Matchstick Marvels, Spanky’s Restaurant & Catering, Goos Implement, Retro Rooster, Independent Insurance-Toledo, Medicap-Toledo, Lincoln Savings Bank, Mid-Iowa Coop, Hometown Foods-Gladbrook, Farm to Flame-Traer, Brit Marie’s Country Boutique, Heather Warren/Day in the Sun, Nucara-Traer, Cheryl Hoskey, Mandy and Taylor Lekin, Kristin Stein, Chillos of Traer, A Wild Hair, Farm Service and Deb Kupka.

Queen Katelyn Kucera, then joined Taylor at the podium. Convertibles were provided by Grant Strohbehn, Brett Miller, Randy Welton and Darbie Lynch. They introduced the candidates one by one with their escorts. Escorts were Connor Murty, Layne Murty, Ross Murty, Dylan Hosek, Jace Hlas, with Thomas Hulme being doorman. Each candidate presented her speech to the crowd.

Then came the moment the crowd had been awaiting, crowning the 2021 Tama County Fair Queen. The sealed envelopes were then opened revealing the judges results.

Amid cheers from the crowd, the envelope was opened revealing Frances Jackson had been chosen to serve as the 2021 Tama County Fair Queen. Frances was presented the crown, sash, gift bag and her bouquet of roses.

Hope Werner was crowned Princess and was presented a sash, tiara and gift bag.

Watch for Frances at the State Fair beginning August 11th. The crowning will take place Saturday, August 14th at 7:00 pm on the Anne and Bill Riley Stage.

A number of additional awards and honors were given out at the fair’s opening ceremony ahead of the queen crowning.

Fair scholarship recipients for 2020 and 2021 were honored. In 2020 scholarships went to Katelyn Kucera and Paige Jergens. The 2021 scholarship recipients included Frances Jackson and Dylan Hosek.

The annual Friends of the Fair Award was given out to a number of people and organizations for 2020 and 2021. Recipients for 2020 were Stan and Charlotte Upah and their Toledo businesses, U.S.S. Polaris and Upah Income Tax and Bookkeeping.

In 2021, the honors went to former fair board treasurer Jeanne Beenken, the Gladbrook EMS Department and Frank Albertson.

Following the awards, Spanky and Sons Auction conducted an auction of donated decor items with proceeds going toward future scholarships.