GREENVILLE — Judged on personality, outfit, poise and stage presence, 41 girls and 11 boys competed at the Little Mister and Little Miss Darke County Fair king and queen pageant on Monday evening.
Coordinated by local business, The Flower Patch, this year’s theme, Under the Sea, allowed children, from ages 3 to 5, to dress up as jellyfish, mermaids, scuba divers, crabs, fish and other sea creatures.
Katie Netzley, The Flower Patch manager, said the theme is usually picked by January and they start looking for sponsors, planning and shopping for prizes begin in the spring.
“I look at it as the staple of the Darke County Fair,” Netzley said. “It’s been around for so long and it gives the kids who are not in 4H and other clubs a chance to participate in the fair if the parents chose.”
This was the seventh year The Flower Patch has coordinated the event.
Each contestant got the chance to walk the runway, located in the fair’s Youth Building, show off their costume and answer questions, provided by emcee Lorraine Grote, about their costumes, favorite color, favorite sea creature and what they wanted to be when they grew up.
In reply to what they wanted to be when they grew up, various answers included police officers, veterinarians, dentists and, to follow the Under the Sea theme, fish.
“I think it’s good for kids to be in front of people so they’re not shy, it’s help them get a lot of skills that they use later in life for job interviews and things like that,” said Shelley Miller, mother. “If they’re more outgoing and not shy it makes their life a lot easier as an adult.”
Miller’s son Pacey, 4, competed in the pageant this year. His older brother, Andy, won the title as Little Mister in 2012.
“Andy loved it, ended up winning every pageant in the county as well as some other pageants around and that led to some other things for him so it is little brother’s turn and he’s just thrilled that it’s his turn,” Shelley said. “He woke up this morning all excited. It’s becoming a family tradition.”
Pacey, who was dressed as a jellyfish, received second runner-up.
Dressed as a surfer with a shark bite taken out of his surf board, Isaac Rausch, 3, son of Nic and Elisabeth Rausch, won the title of Little Mister while, dressed as a lionfish, Sierra Johnson, 5, daughter of Dusty and Amber Johnson, won the title of Little Miss.
The title of first runner-up went to Brandt Weaver, 4, son of Jim and Holly Weaver, and Eleanor Sutter, 4, daughter of Matthew and Sarah Sutter.
The title of second runner-up went to Pacey and Aubrie Unger, 4, daughter of Abigail Bunch.
The title of third runner-up went to Eli Gosnell, 5, son of Trevor and Kristen Gosnell, and Katheryn Gibson, 3, daughter of Dan and Stacy Gibson.
Winning most photogenic were Charlie Marker, 4, son of Matthew and Tonya Marker, and Hayden Gahret, 3, daughter of Chicco Gahret.
Other boy participants included: Malachi Drew, 3, son of Matthew and Bethany Drew, Owen Davis, 4, son of Dylan and Marah Davis, Maverick Keller, 5, and Archer Keller, 3, sons of Jon and Nicole Keller, Guy Purvis, 3, son of Andrew and Tabbie Purvis, and Levi Douds, 5, son of Nate and Sarah Douds.
Other girl participants included: Auvrie Hawkey, 3, daughter of Chris and Stephanie Hawkey, Kourtni Fort, 4, daughter of Gary and Kelly Fort, Sophia Flory, 4, daughter of Alicia Flory, Bentlee Hall, 3, daughter of Tommy Hall and Jenni Borland, Kami Norris, 4, daughter of Mitch and Angie Norris, Glori Mae Rausch, 5, daughter of Nic and Elisabeth Rausch, Parker Francis, 5, daughter of Jeff and Rachel Francis, Kinsley Flory, 4, daughter of Laura Flory, Ellyson Strickland, 3, daughter of Amariah Wetzel, Avalynn Lowry, 3, daughter of Travis and Natalie Lowry, Addie King, 4, daughter of Kristina Pace, Alia Warren, 3, daughter of Josh and Kara Warren, Georgianna Rausch, 4, daughter of Nic and Elisabeth Rausch, Scarlett Cole, 3, daughter of Kevin and Holly Cole, Isabella Drew, 5, daughter of Matthew and Bethany Drew, Tatum Marker, 4, daughter of Jason and Beth Marker, Sophie Baker, 5, daughter of Robert and Holly-Marie Bixler, Aberrey LeeAnn Thacker, 4, daughter of Ty and Lackey Thacker, Emily Schoen, 3, daughter of Justin and Amy Schoen, Raygan Smith, 3, daughter of Robert and Tasha Smith, Lauren Holzapfel, 5, daughter of Matt and Karla Holzapfel, Ella Locker, 5, daughter of Corey and Shelly Locker, Hannah Haines, 4, daughter of Brian and Ashley Haines, Callie Ann Marker, 5, daughter of Jared and Alicia Marker, Sophia Trout, 5, daughter of Jim and Ashley Trout, Emily Jamison, 5, daughter of Ben and Mandy Jamison, Aubree Locker, 3, daughter of Corey and Shelly Locker, Pearl Elizabeth Marker, 3, daughter of Jared and Alicia Marker, Tienna Woodbury, 5, daughter of Derrick and Kristen Woodbury, Makena Hall, 5, daughter of Quentin Vaughan, Jessica Shelton and Jimmy and Tasia Hall, Autumn Gessler, 5, daughter of Michael and Amy Gessler, Maybree Locke, 3, daughter of Josh and Megan Locke, Adrianna Nixon, 5, daughter of Greg Nixon and Amanda Troutwine, Ivy Alt, 3, daughter of Jacob and Heather Alt, Emma Selhorst, 4, daughter of Kevin and Sarah Selhorst and Sage Jones, 5, daughter of Chad Jones and Christina Parker.
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