(BEDFORD) - The Lawrence County 4-H Fair queen pageant is Monday night at the Lawrence County 4-H Fairgrounds Expo Hall.
The pageant came earlier this year because of the Fourth of July weekend, Pageant Director Tobey Werner explained.
Typically the pageant would be held on the Friday before fair week. That would have placed the pageant on July 5, part of the holiday weekend.
Werner said the pageant will go back to its normal scheduling next year, but sees this year's early start as an opportunity "just to kick off the whole week."
This year the queen category has seven contestants, the Junior Fair Queen has 12 contestants, and the Queen Escort event has 14 contestants.
The numbers for the pageant are down in general, Werner said, because of new age restrictions at the state level of the pageant. This year fair queen contestants must be at least 17 years old by June 1. "If they win at the state division, she'll be queen next year. So she has to be 18 at that time because she's a paid employee of the State Fair," she explained.
Although the new restrictions have cost the pageant some of its queen contestants, Werner said the numbers are up in the two younger divisions.
Werner believes the new restrictions will be good in the long run. Although some younger girls were left out this year, Werner believes they will come back stronger next year.
The pageant is at 7 p.m. Monday, with doors opening at 6 p.m. Admission costs $2 for anyone in kindergarten and up.
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