Hannah Horst’s first official day as 2012 Franklin County Fair Queen started off unceremoniously Tuesday.
She woke up at 4:30 a.m. after sleeping in her car because it was too cold in the barn.
Hannah, 17, then started washing 10 calves with friends from her 4-H club in preparation for the 4-H Dairy Roundup later Tuesday morning.
“I was pretty dirty,” Hannah said with a laugh.
By 9 a.m., Hannah was handing out ribbons to winners of the dairy roundup. Midway through, she swapped her crown and gown for a rope and boots to show her winter calf, Klause, during the event.
That’s what the rest of fair week will be like for Hannah, who was crowned fair queen Monday night at the Chambersburg (Pa.) Rod and Gun Club grounds off Warm Spring Road. She’ll be handing out ribbons, smiling for lots of photos and showing her calf.
She also will be in about a dozen parades and doing plenty of waving between now and next August.
“It’s definitely going to be a great year,” she said.
Hannah, who lives in Mercersburg, Pa., will be a senior at James Buchanan High School when school starts Monday.
Maranda McGowan, 16, of St. Thomas, Pa., was named the 2012 Franklin County Fair Queen alternate. She’ll be a junior at James Buchanan.
To be eligible, contestants had to be between the ages of 16 and 20, be residents of the county, and were required to write a biography about themselves, deliver a short speech on “Why I think county fairs are important to Pennsylvania” and answer an impromptu question about themselves.
The question for Hannah was to pick three words to describe yourself and answer why they describe her.
She said she picked outgoing, humble and creative.
“I said creative because I always like to try new things, and I love art and music.
“I said outgoing because I’m always branching out and I’m a people person.
“I said humble because I like to thank God and my role models for all the things I have and all the help they’ve given me,” she said.
Some of the highlights during her brief tenure as queen:
- Her sister Rachel, the 2011 fair queen, got to pin the tiara on Hannah.
- “I like it when the little kids come up and say, ‘Look, mom, it’s the queen.’ I did that when I was little,”
Hannah said. “That’s pretty cool.”
Hannah also is active in music groups at James Buchanan, is involved with several church youth groups and is a member of the Hamilton-St. Thomas 4-H Dairy Club.
Hannah and Maranda are active in school and 4-H, and both work on dairy farms in the county.
The fair got off to a soggy start Monday, as rains forced the cancellation of the tractor pull and limited the crowd “considerably,” fair President Robert Eckstine said.
He said there are plenty of good things left to see, do and eat at the fair, which runs through Saturday night.
For more information, go to www.franklincountyfair.org.