Kendal Anderson looked shocked but happy when she was chosen to reign over the 160th Ogle County Fair.
As family, friends, and well-wishers cheered, Anderson, 18, Chana, was crowned 2013 Ogle County Fair Queen by 2012 queen Emily Hanlin, Leaf River.
"I'm completely surprised," she said after the July 20 coronation. "I wasn't expecting it at all. Any one of us could have won."
The daughter of Randy and Nancy Anderson, she is a 2012 OHS graduate and currently attends Kishwaukee College, Malta. She plans to pursue a career as a pediatric nurse.
Anderson was one of seven candidates who competed in the pageant held at the Oregon Coliseum.
Each gave a one-minute speech, "strutted her stuff" in a swimsuit and evening gown, and then answered off-the-cuff questions as the crowd watched and three judges marked down the points.
First runner-up was Korrin Cogswell, 16, the daughter of T.J. and Beth Burpo, Byron.
Brenna Euhus, 19, the daughter of Harry and Chris Euhus, Byron, was the second runner-up.
Erica Hess, 21, the daughter of Timothy and Janice Hess, Davis Junction, was chosen as Miss Congeniality.
Other candidates were Whitney Felker, 16, the daughter of Tom and Cathy Felker, Byron; Emily Bigelow, 17, the daughter of George and Kristin Bigelow, Kings; and Katrina Lowry, 16, the daughter of Kenny and Connie Lowry, Grand Detour.
Anderson, along with her court, will preside over the Ogle County Fair July 31-Aug. 4, as well as attend numerous events throughout the coming year.
She will also compete in the Illinois fair queen competition in January.
The queen pageant was coordinated by Michelle Eyster, Chana, who is also in charge of Little Miss and Mister pageants for boys and girls ages 3-6, a Young Miss pageant for girls ages 7-11, and a Junior Miss pageant for girls 12-15, all of which will be held on the fair's opening night.
Mudbog races, dirt drag races, and a lumberjack show are new features at this year's fair which will focus on family fun. “We have lots of people say they really enjoy our fair because it's a family fair and they can just let the kids have fun,” said fair president Harlan Holm.
The Ogle County Fairgrounds is located two miles west of Oregon off Ill. 64 on Limekiln Road.