More country than courtly
By VERONICA GORLEY
VINDICATOR STAFF WRITER
LISBON -- Wearing jeans and muddy boots, the 2001 Columbiana County Junior Fair king and queen looked anything but courtly.
Green sashes with a yellow and white ribbon at the hip and a crown atop the queen's head were the only indication of any royalty.
The crowning of king Wade Baer, 18, and queen Bille Jo Kornbau, 19, took place during the county fair's opening ceremonies Monday.
The king and queen said the honor does not come void of responsibility.
Besides attending all the market sales and some of the events, Baer said their duties include "just representing the fair and talking to the people. We have little kids looking up to us, so we've got to be good."
School leader: A resident of Rogers, Baer will be a senior at Crestview High School, where he plays football and serves as the class president and student council president. He's also a member of the junior fair board.
"We do things like paint, fix stuff -- a number of maintenance things to get ready for the fair," he said.
Baer was one of only two boys in the running for fair king.
"It was between me and my best friend, and I was kind of surprised," he added.
Baer said he has been coming to the fair for the eight years of his membership with 4-H, and he enjoys it.
"It's my vacation," he said, smiling.
This year, Baer showed a 241-pound market hog, which placed fourth in its weight class.
Kornbau competed against three other girls for the crown. The Salem resident is a freshman at Kent State University's Salem Campus, where she majors in early childhood education and maintains a 4.0 grade point average.
Graduating from United High School in 2000, she was a member of Future Farmers of America. Kornbau also attended Columbiana County Career Center for Agriculture during her high school years.
Scholarship winner: She was one of three winners of this year's 4-H book scholarship. Kornbau returned to the royal court for the second year, and she was surprised when she won this year.
"I knew there was some competition," she said.
This year isn't the first time Kornbau has worn a crown, however. She was the Ohio Valley Draft Horse Queen in 1999.
Like Baer, Kornbau showed a market hog, which weighed in at 260 pounds, and she also showed a carcass hog.
Members of 4-H decide in January if they're interested in being on royal court, which is limited to six boys and six girls, Kornbau said. The court committee selects and notifies the court members in May.
"The more things you've done through 4-H, the better chance you have [of making the court]," Kornbau said.
The court members are each interviewed by 4-H participants in other counties to determine the king and queen.
Baer and Kornbau offered advice for fellow 4-H'ers: "Stick with it," Baer said. "Don't give up. There's a lot of opportunities," Kornbau added.
"I'd just like to see more kids get involved in 4-H just because of the opportunities I've had through 4-H," Kornbau said. "I've been in 4-H for 11 years, and I wouldn't trade it."