For Sequim native Janeydean O’Connor, earning the title of queen is only one facet to her many talents.
O’Connor, 16, was born in Port Angeles and raised in Sequim. She was crowned the 2017 Clallam County Fair Queen this year but has been involved in the fair for five years.
She is a sophomore in a home school co-op Aletheia and a 4-H member of Pure Country. She also fills her schedule with ballet, playing the oboe for the Northwinds Homeschool Band and raising turkeys.
In her previous fair experience, O’Connor showed and had auctioned turkeys and pigs and showed cats. This year, along with her royalty duties, she will be showing ipoultry. “It’s very fun to be more involved with the fair,” O’Connor said.
Her 4-H project is poultry and she said in order to auction a turkey in the fair she also must show a chicken — and will be showing Clallam County Fair Princess Marykate Napiontek’s chicken.
“I just thought turkeys were interesting birds and it was fun,” O’Connor said. She said she purchased a turkey in April, raised it for four months and will be auctioning it off at the fair this year.
O’Connor said a snapshot of her duties during the fair include getting up in the morning and feeding the animals, taking care of her barn duties, and if she has spare time, she enjoys walking around the booths.
One of her favorite parts about the fair is eating scones, she said.
In order to earn the title of fair queen, O’Connor said she had to attend orientation in January, sell fair passes and collect money and give a five-minute speech about a specific topic. Candidates must have a minimum of a 2.6 GPA and be in high school. The candidate with the most points earns the title of queen.
O’Connor said in her five-minute speech she had to explain who her favorite superhero was and why. She said her mother Becky O’Connor was her superhero.
“Ten years ago she had to get a job and start supporting her family and she did it all by herself,” she said.
In her free time, O’Connor said some of her favorite activities include walking around downtown Sequim and going shopping and hanging out with friends at the Dungeness River.
When she finishes high school, O’Connor said she might be interested in being an orthodontist because, “I want to help people smile,” she said.
Laurie Davies, Clallam County Fair board member and royalty coordinator, said contestants do not have to be members of 4-H or Future Farmers of America, can be male or female and must be high school students with a minimum of a 2.6 GPA.
The Clallam County Fair Royalty is a scholarship program that awards $500 to the queen and $400 to the princess. Royalty must graduate high school and the money will go to the school of their choice once he or she graduates.
Clallam County Fair Royalty will hold a meet and greet at 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 17, in the KidZone at the county fair where guests can meet the queen and princess.