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News Eagle - Hawley, PA
  •  Olivia Funk is GDS Fair Queen

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  •  Managing EditorA Western Wayne junior became the 2012 Fair Queen at the 95th GDS Fair, Tuesday night.?Olivia Funk, 16, of Lake Ariel, continues a tradition that began 28 years ago, with the mission to promote agriculture and the good name of the Greene-Dreher-Sterling Fair. As queen, she will serve as the Fair’s Goodwill Ambassador at scheduled functions through the year and help represent the GDS Fair at the Pennsylvania State Fair Convention in Hershey. Her first duty, of course, is to reign at proceedings at the 95th fair, underway through Labor Day.?Also vying for the crown were Maddison DeFrehn, age 17, of Greentown, a student at Wallenpaupack Area High School, and Ashley Rivezzi, 18, of Lake Ariel, a Johnson College student. Rivezzi was picked as the Alternate Queen.?DeFrehn received the award for “Miss Congeniality.” Rivezzi came away with honors for “Most Photogenic” and “Best Interview.”?Emma Lamberton, the 2011 Queen, conveyed the crown to her successor. In her farewell speech, Lamberton said being Fair Queen is not a dream or bedtime story, but something real. It was her wish that she could teach children about agriculture and be empowered by it. She stated that it was not about the crown or sash or publicity, but about making a difference in others and promoting agriculture.?During the ceremony under the tent, Funk stressed in her speech that agriculture is a big part of ever day life and as near as your grocery store. Our hard working farmers deserve our thanks, she said. We all can help by preserving our land, recycling and composting. She said we need to support our farmers and local businesses.?Each contestant was asked a question, picked by emcee Arthur J. Frey. Funk was asked what she would do if she was a passenger in a car and the adult who was driving started dialing a cell phone. Funk said she’d tell the driver to stop that and might offer to make the call for the driver.?Proudly wearing her tiara and carrying her roses after the event, Funk commented, “I’m thrilled to be Fair Queen, it is such an honor- one of my dreams.” She said that the GDS Fair has been a big part of her life.?Frey stated in an interview that he has been emcee at the pageant for at least 22 years.?Over the years Frey has observed that there are fewer entrants. The contestants must be girls 16 or older from Wayne or Pike counties, and in some way be involved in agriculture or related fields. There are fewer and fewer farms in the region these days, Frey observed. When he attended high school in Newfoundland, agriculture was a required course.?“These girls are the cream of what we have in our youth,” he said. The girls are sincere in their presentations. “This is not a popularity contest.” Frey said he tried to put them at ease with a little wit. He said he could never be a judge, and make such a difficult decision. Each year they find new judges.?Frey also has served as emcee at the popular fair baby pageant, for over 30 years.?For the fair schedule and more information on the GDS Fair, visit www.gdsfair.com or call (570)676-4047.
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