Riley Crowned Wisconsin's 2014 Fairest Of The Fairs

Crawford County native is a student at UW-Madison.

Published on: Jan 13, 2014

The 2014 Wisconsin Fairest of the Fairs was selected on Jan. 8 during the 91st annual Wisconsin Association of Fairs Convention in Wisconsin Dells. A field of 40 contestants from county and district fairs throughout Wisconsin participated in the competition, and Kaitlyn  Riley,  21,  representing  the  Crawford  County  Fair,  took  home  the  coveted  Fairest  of  the  Fairs crown. 

The  Wisconsin  Fairest  of  the  Fairs  program  was  created  to  promote  the  variety  of  educational, agricultural, social, cultural and commercial opportunities available at Wisconsin's fairs. It is a position of responsibility to the citizens of Wisconsin and the winner must possess excellent speaking, writing and listening skills as well as organization, time management and a passion for Wisconsin's fair industry. 

Kaitlyn  Riley,  21,  representing  the  Crawford  County  Fair,  is the 2014 Wisconsin  Fairest  of  the  Fairs.  Photo by Hamburg Photography.
Kaitlyn Riley, 21, representing the Crawford County Fair, is the 2014 Wisconsin Fairest of the Fairs. Photo by Hamburg Photography.

Riley will serve as a spokesperson for the Wisconsin Association of Fairs, representing all 76 Wisconsin county and district fairs in 2014.  Her one-year term begins immediately  and  responsibilities  include traveling  to  fairs  throughout  the  state  making  appearances,  working  with  media  and  promoting  the educational, social and economic importance of Wisconsin's Fair and Agriculture Industries. 

In addition, she will serve as an ambassador of the 2014 Wisconsin State Fair which will take place July 31 through Aug. 10. This includes greeting fairgoers and special guests,

performing  as  master  of  ceremonies  for  several  events  before  and  during  the  Fair,  participating  in various contests and representing the Fair during select media appearances. 

Riley was selected from a field of talented young women, and replaces the 2013 Wisconsin Fairest of the Fairs, Steffani Koch of Dodge County. The  Fairest  of  the  Fairs  is  chosen  by  a  panel  of  three  judges representing the fair, communications and agriculture industries. This year's judges were Terri Wilfert, Bill Bruins and Christianne Williams.

The daughter of Jody and Paulette Riley of Gays Mills, Riley is a senior at the University of Wisconsin-Madison studying strategic communications and broadcast journalism. She  is  currently  the  public relations  student  officer  for  the  Association  of  Women  in  Agriculture  and  has  served  on  numerous communications and agriculture committees. For several years Riley has volunteered at nursing homes, children's hospitals and the Ronald McDonald House while also receiving Dean's List Honors each year at UW-Madison. 

Ariel  Hellenbrand,  19,  representing  the  Lodi  Agricultural  Fair  was  named  first  runner-up.  She  is  the daughter of Paul and Donna Hellenbrand of Lodi, and is a sophomore at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville. 

Jenna  Crayton,  21,  representing  the  Racine  County  Fair  was  named  second  runner-up.  She is the daughter of James and Jacqueline Crayton of Oak Creek and is a junior at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point.

Alizabeth  Elfering,  20,  representing  the  Kenosha  County  Fair  was  named  third  runner-up.  She is  the daughter of Dean and Karen Elfering of Mauston and is a junior at Minnesota State University, Mankato.

Jennifer  Kuffel,  19,  representing  the  Sheboygan  County  Fair  was  named  fourth  runner-up.  She  is  the daughter of Micheal and Amy Kuffel of Oostburg and is a sophomore at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. 

Alexia Gegare, 19, representing the Rock County Fair, was named Miss Congeniality. She is the daughter of Debbie Gegare of Janesville and attends the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse. 

"The  Fairest  of  the  Fairs  plays  an  important  role  in  promoting  all  Fairs  in  Wisconsin,  including  the Wisconsin State Fair," stated Rick Frenette, CEO of Wisconsin State Fair Park. "Our staff is fortunate to work with a talented, intelligent and passionate young woman each year, and we look forward to the opportunity to get to know Kaitlyn and contribute to her personal and professional growth." 

Individuals interested in competing in future Wisconsin Fairest of the Fairs contests may contact their county or district fair board for more information, or visit www.wifairs.com

The 2014 Wisconsin State Fair, presented by U.S. Cellular, will take place July 31 – Aug. 10.

Source: Wisconsin State Fair