Ten-year-old Holley Hickel, of Colusa, experienced Magic at the Colusa County Fair as her dreams came true while being crowned as the 2015 Mini Miss Colusa County.
Hickel was one of eight contestants to compete for the prestigious title of Mini Miss Colusa County on Wednesday, June 3, 2015. Hickel wooed the crowd as she performed ‘God Bless the USA’ by Lee Greenwood.
Hickel is the daughter of Rob and Kelley Hickel.
Crowned as the 2015 Mini Miss Colusa County 1st Runner up was, 11-year-old Makayla Frias, of Colusa, and 2nd Runner-up was crowned to 11-year-old Kiana Sanapaw.
The 2015 Mini Miss Colusa County Contestants also included: 12-year-old, America Montano, of Colusa; 9-year-old, Mary Jo Wilson, of Colusa; and 11-year-old Reese Roper, of Colusa; 11-year-old, Morgan Dennis, of Maxwell; and 12-year-old Sierra Abel, of Williams.
The Colusa County Fair celebrated its 76th years with an official opening that included a flag ceremony with the Colusa County VFW, and the Maxwell American Legion. The National Anthem was sung by Anastasia Azevedo, followed by a ribbon cutting hosted by the Colusa County Chamber of Commerce.
During the opening ceremony, a representative from the Office of Senator Jim Nielsen presented Colusa County Fair CEO, Jonathan Howard with a Certificate of Recognition from the California State legislature for the 2015 Colusa County Fair.
MISS COLUSA COUNTY ANNOUNCED
Later Thursday evening, hundreds gathered at the Grandstands where nine Colusa County Teens competed for the title and crown of 2015 Miss Colusa County.
The scholarship pageant raised a significantly higher amount than in years past, said the pageants Master of Ceremonies, Jim Lemus.
Lemus recited a list of over 50 local business and individual contributors and sponsors involved with the Miss Colusa County Pageant.
As the evening continued, each contestant was scored on their academic achievements, community involvement, extracurricular activities, poise, communication skills, and personality.
The crowd nervously awaited as the panel of judges tallied the scores, and the 2015 Miss Colusa County was announced.
17-year-old, Madison Rainsbarger of Colusa, was selected as the 2015 Miss Colusa County.
Additionally, Rainsbarger was selected as Miss Congeniality by her fellow contestants.
Rainsbarger is the daughter of Josh and Melissa Rainsbarger.
Crowned as the 2015 Miss Colusa County 1st Runner-up was 16-year-old Carissa Cabral, of Arbuckle.
The 2015 Miss Colusa County contestants also included: 16-year-old Jordan Savage of Colusa; 17-year-old Teale Stacey, of Colusa; 16-year-old McKenzie Carvalho, of Maxwell; 17-year-old Larissa Ramirez, of Colusa; 16-year-old Alexis Ferreira, of Colusa; 17-year-old Kodie Solis, of Colusa; and 17-year-old Vanessa Orozco, of Williams.
NORTH DAKOTAN NATIVE AMERICAN STORYTELLER MESMERIZES
Mandan-Hidatsa storyteller and musician, Keith Bear, weaved the magic of the Colusa County with unique stories and song that reflect the dignity and spiritual wisdom of his ancestors.
Hundreds of Colusa County Fair-goers appeared to be mesmerized by the solo ensemble performed outside of the Main Exhibit Hall.
Bear told dozens of Native American stories, songs, many of which have been shared for hundreds of years. Bear also recited several personal stories and performed songs he created for the ones he loves – including his wife and daughter.
“He play’s the flutes beautifully,” said a spectator, “It is very relaxing and calming to hear him play.”
LOTS OF ENTERTAINMENT
In addition to the performances of Keith Bear, other entertainment included musical performances by Westbound 50, Decades, Two Steps Down, and The Alley Cats, British Invasion, 60’s Summer of Love, and The Spazmatics. Additionally, Colusa native, Kaylee Starr played salute to Taylor Swift with “Swift Country”.
Other entertainment included a live Stingray Encounter, Jeremy the Juggler, Splash Dogs, the Amazing Hypnotist James Kellogg Jr., and a Magic Show by Rafael and Katia.
RETURN OF THE KIDDIE PARADE
Flo the Clown lead the Kiddie Parade down Market Street on Friday, June 5, 2015.
The Kiddie Parade is an old tradition of the Colusa County that was brought back by Colusa County Fair CEO, Jonathan Howard with the help of First Five Colusa County and the Colusa Community Advocates for Parents and Children.
“This was so exciting for the youngsters – and it gave parents and grandparents some great memory-making photo opportunities,” said Howard.
Sponsored by the Colusa Lions Club, the Colusa County Fair Parade was one of the largest in quite some time.
Over 60 entries included local business, local law enforcement and fire departments, fair entertainers, board members of the Colusa County Chamber of Commerce and the Colusa County Board of Supervisors, fair entertainers, civic clubs, the Yolo and Chico Shriners Club, the Junior Fair Board, and more!
ETCHEPARE COURTYARD GARDEN DEDICATION
On Friday, June 5, 2015, the newly constructed garden patio and demonstration stage was dedicated in memory of Frances M. Etchepare.
The project was funded through contributions made by the Etchepare family through the Colusa County Fair Foundation, a 501(c)(3) Non-profit aimed at preserving, repairing, and improving the grounds at the fair.
The contributions from the Etchepare Family provided painting of the building, a new roof and now the courtyard and garden plus new air conditioning for the building.
As the group family, and friends of the Etchepare Family mingled, community members were in awe over some of the garden’s features.
“The plants are beautiful,” said Nancy Newlin, “and the planter boxes are very versatile – it’s very comfortable to sit at enjoy the new area.”
Prior to the official Ribbon Cutting with the Colusa County Chamber of Commerce; a representative from Senator Jim Nielsen’s and Assembly Member James Gallagher’s Office presented the Etchepare Family with a Certificate of Recognition.
Colusa County Fair CEO, Jonathan Howard commented that Sheila Etchepare was instrumental in the development, planning and implementation of the project.
Additionally, Diane Vafis was credited with making a considerable contribution to the project by selecting water wise plants.
“These plants although water-wise, are very beautiful and will showcase the courtyard area,” said Shiela Etchepare.
The Colusa County Master Gardeners and Colusa County Garden Club donated their time to plant and landscape the garden courtyard prior to the event.
LOTS OF LAUGHS WITH MR. CINDERFELLA
On Friday, June 5, 2015, a Princeton High School Teen was crowned at the Colusa County Fair’s fourth annual Mr. Cinderfella Charity Pageant.
Hosted by the Junior Fair Board, Mr. Cinderfella is no misspelling but a “serious” competition where young men strut their stuff, and the term ‘beauty’ is used very lightly; all in the name of charity where the winner will receive a donation award benefiting a school program of choice.
The contestants competed with risqué, but gut-busting, lip-sync performances, and recited a pre-prepared speech.
A little rain and a lightning storm in the distance didn’t hinder the contestants performances, and their goal to raise money for their school organization.
Otto Chrestensen, of Princeton, was crowned title of 2015 Mr. Cinderfella.
Chrestensen’s organization of choice, the Princeton FFA, will receive a $1,500 donation.
Lance Gwinnup, of Maxwell, was crowned title of 1st Runner-up for the 2015 Mr. Cinderfella. His organization of Choice, the Maxwell Football Department, will receive a $500 donation.
The 2015 Mr. Cinderfella Contestants also included: Martin Rangel of Maxwell; Cutler Lepper of Colusa; Cody Murphy, of Arbuckle; and C.J. Windsor, of Colusa.
1.5 MILLION CONTRIBUTED TO COLUSA COUNTY YOUTH
A tradition at the Colusa County Fair is the Junior Livestock Auction.
Members of the Future Farmers of America and 4-H spent months raising, feeding, training, and grooming their animals for the annual event.
Sheep, Pigs, Cattle, Goats, Poultry, and Rabbits were shown during the Colusa County Fair and auctioned to the highest bidder on Saturday, June 6, 2015 – and their hard work paid off.
Setting a record in 2014 for the first million-dollar Junior Livestock Auction at the Colusa County – members of the community continued their support for the young livestock marketers and grossing over 1.5 Million Dollars for 2015.
“The support from the community was just amazing,” said Jonathan Howard, Colusa County Fair CEO.
ROCCO’S NAMED TOP CHEF AT COOKING CHALLENGE
In a themed nature of the television cooking competition ‘Chopped’, the Colusa County Fair hosted a competition featuring secret ingredients and three local businesses.
Don Litchfield and his sous chef Richard Sanapaw, of Rocco’s Bar & Grill in Colusa, took first place after cooking two courses from the basket of secret ingredients that included whole red snapper, boneless pork loin, and apple mint jelly.
Andi Ferrendelli and his sous chef Leslie Ferrendelli, of A&L Barbecue in Princeton, took second place, and Jamie Moreno and his sous chef Edgar Martinez, of Granzella’s Restaurant in Williams, placed third.
The judging was completed by Chef Josh Diller, Colusa County Supervisor Denise Carter, Governor Jerry Brown with his wife Anne assisting.
LOCALS GIVE COOKING DEMONSTRATION
A steady crowd visited the air-conditioned community building as several Colusa County residents provided cooking demonstrations at the Colusa County Fair.
Sponsored by Premier Mushrooms, Central Valley Gas Storage, Jefferys Pecans, and Colusa Casino Resort.
Participating in this year’s cooking demonstration included David Ferraiuolo, Gerry Hernandez, Chef Darren with Steelhead Lodge Bar & Grill, Nancy Newlin, Chef Ross of Market Street Grill and Lloyd Green Jr. with the Williams Pioneer Review – Colusa County News.
Participants of the Cooking Demonstration Stage had one rule, to use as many ingredients that can be found locally in Colusa County.
Lloyd Green from the Williams Pioneer Review prepared a Colusa County Taco Pie that included Tomatoes, Olives, Bell Peppers and Poblano Chiles, Onions, Cheese, Mushrooms, Corn, Ground Beef, and Bisquick.
“This was my first time doing a cooking demonstration, and it was a lot of fun,” said Green, “I look forward to participating again next year.”
COLUSA COUNTY DERBY
The Demolition Derby is a staple event at the Colusa County Fair – an event that has been captivating generations and a great end to the Colusa County Fair.
“The best derby that I have ever been a part of,” said participant John Martin in a Facebook post on Moondog Motorsports, the organizer of the event.
A total of 37 stock cars competed along with 13 trucks and 2 mini cars.
Taking first place in Heat 1 was Alex Wolosz #152, with Hector Ramirez #18x placing second, and Jacob Abel #25 placing third.
Taking first place in Heat 2 was Justin Codorniz #42, with Mike Kett #17x placing second, and Jason Chan #1/3 placing third.
Taking first place in Heat 3 was Bryan Shadinger #34, with Mike Charter #15 placing second, and Mark Hill #4 placing third.
Taking first place in the consolation was Johnny Martin #69, with Nick Reading #6903 placing second and Dylan Codorniz placing third.
Taking first place in the main event was John Shadinger #27, with James Fryer #10 placing second, Jacob Abel #25 placing third, Bobby Rutledge #64 placing fourth, and Justin Fleming #33 placing fifth.
In the Mini Car category, taking first was Jim Campbell #88, and Quentin Indrieri #56 placing second.
In the Truck Category, taking first was Kyle Shadinger #28x, Steve Holland #8 placing second, and Matt Alves #2 placing third.
NOW THAT’S A WRAP!
As the carnival is packed up and on its way to its next event, the air gives a slight reminder of the fun and magic at the fair.
According to Colusa County Fair CEO, Jonathan Howard the fair was up in attendance by 21%
“We had a great year,” said Howard, “I am already looking working on and looking forward to next year.”
As the gates closed for one last time, there is a realization that it wasn’t the ‘magic in the fair’ that made the county fair come to life. That is because a county fair is more than just the carnival, the pageants, the entertainment, the livestock animals, or the many, many exhibition entries. What makes a county fair come to life is the magic in the community – everyone coming together and making all of the events, activities, and exhibitions come to life.
As Dan O’Connel, a Colusa County Fair Board member, commented during the Frances Etchepare Courtyard Dedication, “The government cut our funding – but that didn’t mean a darn thing to Colusa County. We came together, and we made this fair happen.”
Mark your calendars for next year’s County Fair scheduled for June 9 through June 12, 2016. <