by Jonathan Weaver
For three years, Kara Zolocsik competed for the Great Dayton Fair queen crown until she won it in 2015.
But, August 14, Zolocsik (of Dayton) will have to relinquish her jewels.
“When I was a little girl at the fair, I always looked up to the fair queen as a role model. I knew when I got that age, I would want to grow up and try to run for fair queen and (try to) have little girls look up to me like I did,” Zolocsik said.
Now 20 years old and a soon-to-be junior at Penn State-University Park, Zolocsik’s last appearance as queen was during last weekend’s Clearfield County Fair.
But, not before gaining valuable public speaking and “once-in-a-lifetime” experiences, as well as being able to meet industry leaders that could one day advance her career.
Zolocsik’s public speaking experience also helped her successfully become a part of the Pennsylvania Beef Council’s ‘Millennial to Millennial’ (M2M) 2.0 Program – a program that, according to the organization’s website, “creates beef community advocates for use at large consumer events and speaking engagements, educating the public about beef and beef production.”
While she was a Marion Center student, Zolocsik was a member of Triple-S 4-H club and Marion Center FFA (in FFA she won the Greenhand, Star Chapter Greenhand and Star Chapter Farmer awards). She won the senior showmanship class at the Dayton Fair and was also the leader of teen council of Armstrong County and a member of THON.
More of Zolocsik’s insight into the past year and the upcoming crowning will be in this weekend’s Kittanning Paper weekend edition.
This Sunday, fair queen contestants will be interviewed at the Marshall House before the August 14 crowning at the grandstand on the Dayton Fairgrounds – something Zolocsik recalled being nervous about.
Zolocsik said she personally knows all of the 2016 contestants.
Each contestant must be 16 to 20 years of age and live in Armstrong County or attend a school or 4-H club in the county.