2016 Fair Queen Anni Shaffer
Being the 2016 Somerset County Fair Queen has been quit the roller coaster. But, by far, one of the best experiences of my life. As the fair queen, one of my duties is to promote agriculture and teach people of all ages about animals, farm life, and most importantly, how to have fun while doing it. However, as much as I have been teaching others, they have been teaching me as well. I have learned how to speak in front of large crowds with ease, how to properly show each type of livestock, and how to get around the fair security to go down the fun slide.
One of the most memorable moments about being fair queen was watching the 4-H and FFA members show their projects. Though, these projects were not just merely projects for these members, over the months of raising, feeding, and training the animals, an inseparable bond forms. The expression on the members face when they receive a ribbon is indescribable and reminds me of why I absolutely love being the fair queen.
This past January, I had the opportunity to attend the state convention in Hershey where I competed for the state title against sixty other talented young ladies. Unfortunately, I did not leave Hershey a state fair queen but, I did walk away with something better. I left with many newly formed friendships that I will forever be grateful for.
The past several months of my reign, thankfully, I was never alone. For that, I owe the biggest thank you to my parents, Rick and Suzette, for taking me everywhere and anywhere I need to go, making sure I am there on time, dressing me in the correct outfit, and best of all, being my number one fan club. Another huge thank you to my entire family for always supporting me in all that I do and being the loudest fan club there is. On top of that, we are beyond blessed to have a fair board as great as we do. Behind closed doors, they are constantly bettering our fair and their work does not go unseen.
My family and the Somerset County Fair goes way back. At the end of each fair, I can hardly wait for the next. As a child, and even today, the fair is something I look forward to every year. It's a time for family to bond, friends to laugh, and for life to get a little better.