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Shepherd student named Berkeley Fair queen

August 05, 2003|by CANDICE BOSELY

martinsburg@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - For some the best is, well, the best.

Kara Marie Frye, though, strives for better than the best.

At two minutes past 8 p.m. Monday, Frye was crowned Miss Berkeley County Youth Fair. Last year, she finished as the pageant's first runner-up.

Frye, 18, will be a sophomore this fall at Shepherd College, where she majors in music education. A member of Valley Star 4-H Club, Frye said she hopes to one day teach music at her alma mater, Musselman High School.

Twelve teenagers participated in the Miss Berkeley County Youth Fair pageant. Courtney Kilmer, 14, who will be a ninth-grader this fall at Musselman High School, was named first runner-up and will take over the crown if Frye cannot perform her duties.

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At the fair's indoor arena, the hundreds of people attending the pageant tried to cool themselves with promotional fans. Judging from cheers and applause, Frye and Kilmer were two of the crowd's favorites.

After the field was narrowed to five contestants, each was asked the same question by the master of ceremonies, local magician Michael T. Myers. The question was, "What does it mean to you when you hear the phrase, 'Bloom where you are planted?'"

While each contestant answered, the others remained sequestered in a soundproof portable camper, where air conditioning and music ensured they would not overhear the question.

Frye, who later said she considered the possibility that the question might revolve around the pageant's theme of flowers and blooms, answered that the phrase makes her think of her roots in Back Creek Valley.

Her entire family has grown up in the valley, she said. "It really makes me want to bloom there," she said.

When she begins her family, hopefully in the same area, Frye said she wants her children to join 4-H so they can share similar experiences.

Being named Miss Berkeley County Youth Fair "represents what I stand for, which is the 4-H motto 'To make the best better,'" Frye said. She said one should have goals that always get higher.

Three judges determined the pageant's winner.

Of the five finalists, Julianne Frye, 16, was named fourth runner-up. Ilene Funk, 16, was named third runner-up and Amy Custer, 18, was named second runner-up. Funk also received the Evelyn Talbott Community Service Award for her volunteer work.

The other contestants were Jenna Marker, 18; Amanda Dellinger, 17; Natalie Wenck, 17; Whitney Henry, 15; Tiffany Burkhart, 18; Nicole Sencindiver, 14; and Ashley Banks, 16.

Marker and Henry received Miss Congeniality awards.

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