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68th Annual

Sept. 10 - 13, 2015

Blue Jeans and Country Dreams



Queen Alexee Howell welcomes you to the Fair Welcome everyone, to the 68th Okanogan County Fair: Blue Jeans and Country Dreams. My name is Alexee Howell and I am your 2015 Fair Queen. Hopefully, everyone has recovered from the devastating fires this past year. The theme I chose

is a reflection of the amazing people who call Okanogan County home. My hat’s off to you all. I am from Tonasket and am now a senior at Tonasket High School. I am currently involved with our school’s ASB, FFA and Range Riders clubs. I feel honored

to have been able to represent our Fair this year at parades and community events across our county. I enjoyed meeting people and visiting and encouraging everyone I could to come to our Fair and have the best time. Okanogan County Fair has

been bringing our communities together since 1947. Our Fair has always been the place for farmers, ranchers, bakers, sewers, craftsmen, photographers and youth to come together once a year to showcase their wares. There is something for everyone at the Fair, no matter what your age. The animal barns showcase the best livestock that Okanogan County has to offer. You can also shop to your heart’s content in the Commercial and Agriplex buildings, as well as learn what’s new in the latest building materials or take a ride on the Tilt-A-Whirl



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or even try your luck at dart balloons. Don’t forget to stop and support our community service organizations and buy a raffle ticket! Come on in and boogie down to some great music or just sit a spell and visit with friends, old and new. The fair truly is for all of us, from young to old. You don’t have to be in FFA or 4-H to participate; pre-junior to adult and even professionals all may enter. Get your entry submitted today! I am so excited for this year’s fair and hope to see you there!


Tonasket girls running for 2016 Fair Queen




Two girls from Tonasket are hoping to be named 2016 Okanogan County Fair Queen: Serenity Poletti, age 16; and Brisa Leep, age 19. Serenity will be a junior at Tonasket High School in the fall, and is involved in the ASB. She also serves as a District 7 Officer for FFA, and a volunteer firefighter at the District 7 department. “My father, Rob Poletti, is the Fire Chief in Riverside, so I have been around it all my life,” said Poletti. “But I had to wait until I was 16 before I could begin volunteering with the fire department.” She said she would be busier as a District 7 Officer for FFA this year, since the other officers are from Chelan; and many of them lost livestock in the fire. “A lot of the District Officers will be raising money for people who lost livestock,” Serenity said. Serenity, who grew up in Riverside and Loomis and now lives in Tonasket, said she has also volunteered at the Omak Stampede and alongside her grandmother with the Elks Foundation. She is in the process of applying to work at the Extended Care Facility in Tonasket, and hopes to find work at pet shelters in Tonasket. Another project she hopes to complete is to hold an auction to raise money for cancer awareness. “I think a lot more people will attend and help out with the event if I hold it for all types of cancer; not just for one person or one type of cancer,” she said. Serenity said she gained public speaking skills through FFA events and trying out for the Okanogan County Junior Rodeo Queen last year. “With my love of volunteering, I have gained many public speaking skills. I love the outdoors, and have a passion to help others,” Serenity said. “I am honored to be running for Miss Okanogan County Fair Queen 2016. The Fair represents the whole community. I have a lot of love for my county; I’ve lived here all my life. I would love to be the face for the county and make sure the younger generations realize how great a county Okanogan is.” Serenity showed a horse at the Fair last year, and while she wasn’t sure if she would be showing a horse again this year, she knew she would be submitting some pictures of Palmer Lake, horses and fires into the photography exhibit. Brisa Leep, daughter of Bryce and Teri Leep, graduated from Tonasket High School in 2014 after being born and raised in Tonasket. She is currently taking online classes for graphic design after attending Spokane Falls Community College for one quarter. “I decided to come home and take classes online. Everyone else was working at a slower pace in the college classes, so now I

Madison Shellenbarger/submitted photo

Serenity Poletti (left) and Brisa Leep have thrown their hats into the ring for the right to be named 2016 Okanogan County Fair Queen. can work at a faster pace on my own. Plus, showing horses and perhaps a craft entry through her 4-H group, the Range Riders. I’m not a city kid,” Brisa said. Brisa was the 2014 Miss Tonasket Rodeo She was involved with the FFA all four years in high school, and served as ASB Queen. “I’ve always been a part of representing President after serving as VP of Publicity her junior year, where responsibilities my town,” said Brisa. “ I am very passionate included making flyers and taking care of about the Fair, and love being a role model.” She said she thought at age 19, she the bulletin board at U.S. Bank. Brisa was also the cheerleading captain her senior wouldn’t be able to run for Fair Queen and was delighted when her friend, 2015 year. Okanogan County Fair Queen Lexee “It’s weird not to be in high school, where I was so active in so many different things,” she said, “so I’ve had to step it up and become involved in Blue Jeans & Country Dreams a lot of these activities at the adult level.” Brisa is an active member of the Athletic Booster Club, helping out by taking pictures at sporting events and keeping up their Facebook page. She will also help out with the cheer squad during football season. She said her biggest hobbies are riding horse in rodeos and on the trail, along with photography. “When you’re involved with horses, it’s all horses,” she said, emphasizing the amount of time involved. Her Fair projects this year include entries in the photography exhibit,

e Okanogan County h t Fai joy r! En

Howell, told her she was eligible up to age 19. “I hope to see lots of people at the Okanogan County Fair this September!” said Brisa. Both girls said they were excited, yet somewhat nervous, about the four days of pageant that running for Fair Queen involved. “Someone will always be watching us; watching what we do,” said Brisa.

Fun for the entire family! We wish all exhibitors the best of luck! For all the hard work and dedication that goes into your projects in the summer, it all comes down to a few highly anticipated minutes in the showing. The memories, however, last for a lifetime.

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What’s happening at your county fair? New events include Heads and Horns Exhibit OKANOGAN – While the familiar things you love about the fair will still be there this year – kids showing their prize winning animals, adults exhibiting their blue ribbon fruits and vegetables, horse racing, the rodeo, music and the carnival – this year’s fair has a few surprises, including a Heads and Horns Show. “The Heads and Horn Show is open to anyone who lives in Okanogan County – any type of taxidermy entry, fur or fish, no matter where it was from, anything from around the world,” said Ila Hall, an Okanogan County Fair Advisory Board member. The Fair Queen Pageant, a chance to get to meet the candidates (see page B3) for next year’s fair, will take place at 7 p.m. at the Rotary Stage. Something new for 2015 is an outdoor movie. Fun Flix, will present a family-friendly movie will be shown at 7 p.m. at the south end of the fairgrounds. Also will be the Comperos Dancing Horses which will perform on Sunday at 1 p.m., said Hall.

“Of course we will have the raptors show every day, as well as L-Bow the Clown and the carnival and live bands. A couple of the bands that are pretty well known are Lace and Lead and Hippies on Vacation, they both will be performing,” said Hall, who added, “There’s the rodeo every night at 7 p.m. and we have the horse racing, which is very popular. This year the fair will also be holding a contest for the tallest cornstock and the tallest sunflower, according to Hall.

“That’s something that isn’t in the fair book,” said Hall. A pie, corn and watermelon eating contest is scheduled for Saturday at 1 p.m, so bring your appetites, suggests Hall. There’s also a photography contest for all ages. Take your favorite photo to the fair, encourages Hall. There are prizes for several different divisions. “Lastly, we’d like to see more Native American and Hispanic entries as the fair tries to become more diverse and appeal to all people in the county,” she said.



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Fair participants ‘pay it forward’ Sharing their expertise BY KATIE TEACHOUT KATHERINE@GAZETTE-TRIBUNE.COM

Katie Teachout/staff photo

Malia Whitmore (left) with her sheep ‘Marley’ and Johnna Terris with her sheep ‘Bob.’ The sheep share their pen with Chloe McFarland’s sheep ‘Ziggy.’

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Local Okanogan County Fair livestock participants are not only discovering the joys of animal husbandry, but the joys of sharing their knowledge and experience; of mentoring friends willing to try something new. Johnna Terris got into raising sheep when a friend asked her if she would like to give it a go. Terris got her first sheep five years ago and raised it under the tutelage of her friend. And now Terris, age 16, is paying that experience forward, mentoring Malia Whitmore, age 12, this year after mentoring Chloe McFarland last year and Larson sisters Hayley and Alyssa the previous year. “It’s nice to be able to show others; now Malia will be able to show others and it just keeps going,” said Terris.

“The sheep don’t like to be alone, so it’s good their friends keep theirs here,” added Johnna’s mom, Jody Terris. Whitmore said her favorite part of the project is walking the sheep every day. She rides her bike over to Terris’s house and they give their sheep a snack before taking them for a stroll, after which the sheep are given their evening meal. “If I walk mine, the rest will follow,” said Terris. “Mine is always out in front like the leader, and they all follow.” They are raising Suffolk cross sheep, and when asked about different personalities Terris said they were “each a little different, but kind of all the same.” “They usually wake us up in the morning; they act so hungry and so needy,” said Terris. “Sometimes we feed them by hand, but usually just put their feed in their own separate pans,” added Whitmore. Terris said McFarland’s sheep barely made weight last year. “It didn’t like to eat, so we added molasses to the feed. Fortunately

the fair people bumped down the weight last year because of the fires. If not for the fires, it wouldn’t have made weight and she wouldn’t have been able to sell it. This year her sheep is big and has no trouble eating.” All fair exhibitors present an educational poster about their animals, and Whitmore said she would be doing hers on sheep’s vision. “I want to know if they can see as good as us, or better,” Whitmore said. “Also, if they can see straight, since their eyes are on the sides of their heads.” Terris said she did her poster last year on sheep’s teeth, but hadn’t picked a topic yet for this year. “We pick a day for a group of girls to come over and do their posters all together and make a day of it,” said Jody Terris. She said a group of 15 shepherds from Tonasket would congregate at their place on August 21, so a sheep shearer could shear them all at once and the fleece would



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Kids’ Day and Nursing Home/Assisted Living Day 9:00 am Fairgrounds open to the public All Day Head & Horns Show – Commercial Building 9:00 am Market Steer Judging – Steer Barn 9:00 am Market Swine Judging – Swine Barn 9:00 am Rabbit Judging – Rabbit Barn 9:00 am-3:00 pm Horse Intermediate Fitting & Showing – North Arena Adult Riding & Halter Classes – North Arena Intermediate Riding Classes – North Arena Senior and Junior Fitting and Showing (Horses) – North Arena Youth Halter Classes – Rodeo Arena Senior and Junior Riding Classes – Rodeo Arena Throughout Day Horse Demonstrations: barefoot trimming, nutrition, tension release – Horse Barns Throughout Day PUD Youth Pole Climb 10:00 am FFA/4-H Produce Judging – Horticulture Barn 11:00 am Raptors – Rotary Stage 11:00 am Mutton Bustin’ – south end of fairgrounds Noon L-Bow the Clown – Roaming 1:00 pm Bottle Baby Calf Show – Beef Show Ring 1:00 pm Market Lamb Judging – Sheep Barn 1:30 pm Grade and Purebred Breeding class – Beef Barn 3:00 pm Raptors – Rotary Stage 3:00 pm Davis Shows Northwest Carnival opens 4:00 pm L-Bow the Clown – Rotary Stage 4:30 pm Sheep Fitting & Showing Demonstration – Sheep Barn 5:30 pm Banner Days – Rotary Stage 5:30 pm Little People Fitting & Showing – Sheep Barn 6:00 pm Lads & Lassies (sheep) Competition – Sheep Barn 6:30 pm Cat Type Classes followed by Cat Fashion Show – Cat Barn 6:00 pm Mutton Bustin’ – south end of fairgrounds 6:30 pm Youth Horsmanship Class sponsored by Sam & Racie McKee – Rodeo Arena 7:00 pm Fair Queen Pageant – Rotary Stage 7:00 pm Fun Flix – south end of fairgrounds 7:00 pm Ranch Rodeo – Rodeo Arena 7:30 pm The Wicks – Rotary Stage 10:00 pm Fairgrounds closed to Public

FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2015 9:00 am All Day 9:00 am 9:00 am – 3:00 pm

11:00 am 11:00 am 11:30 am Noon 1:00 pm 1:00 pm 3:00 pm 3:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:30 pm 4:30 pm 5:00 pm 6:00 pm 6:30 pm 6:30 pm 7:00 pm 7:00 pm 7:30 pm 9:00 pm 10:00 pm

Fairgrounds Open to the public Head & Horns Show – Commercial Building Livestock Fitting & Showing – all barns Horse Trail Classes (all ages) – North Arena Youth Western Classes – Rodeo Arena English Classes – Rodeo Arena Driving Classes – Rodeo Arena Owens Family – Rotary Stage Poultry Fitting & Showing – Poultry Barn Mutton Bustin’ – south end of fairgrounds L-Bow the Clown – Rotary Stage Bottle Baby Calf Show – Beef Show Ring Raptors – Rotary Stage Gideon’s Daughter – Rotary Stage Davis Shows Northwest Carnival opens Mutton Bustin’ – south end of fairgrounds L-Bow the Clown – Roaming Dynamic Duos Competition – Sheep Barn Adult Fitting & Showing (sheep) – Sheep Barn The Wicks – Rotary Stage Cat Fitting & Showing classes – Cat Barn Mutton Bustin’ – south end of fairgrounds Bulls & Barrels – Rodeo Arena Rabbit Agility – Rabbit Barn Sam Platts and Koutenai Three – Rotary Stage Jessica Lynne – Rotary Stage Fairgrounds closed to public

* PUD events subject to crew availability due to regional disaster response efforts

To contact Okanogan County Fairgrounds: Phone: (509) 422-1621 Fax: (509) 422-1203 Message Phone: (509) 422-7109 PO Box 467 175 Rodeo Trail Rd. Okanogan, WA  98840


8:00 am – noon 9:00 am All Day Throughout Day 10:00 am 10:30 am 11:00 am 11:00 am 11:00 am 11:00 am Noon Noon Noon 1:00 pm 1:00 pm 1:00 pm 2:00 pm 2:00 pm 2:00 pm 3:00 pm 3:00 pm 3:00 pm 3:30 pm 5:00 pm 5:30 pm 7:00 pm 7:00 pm 9:00 pm 10:00 pm

Horse Games – North Arena and Rodeo Arena Fairgrounds open to the public Head & Horns Show – Commercial Building Horse Demonstrations: barefoot trimming, nutrition, tension release – Horse Barns Round Robbin Fitting & Showing Contest – Small Animals – south end of fairgrounds Mutton Bustin’ – south end of fairgrounds L-Bow the Clown – Rotary Stage Best Dressed Rabbit Contests – Rabbit Barn Round Robin Fitting & Showing Contest – Large Animals – south end of the fairgrounds Kids’ Races/Games – south end of fairgrounds Raptors – Rotary Stage Spuds in a Bucket Contest – Horticulture Barn Team Roping – Rodeo Arena Pie, Corn & Watermelon eating contests – south end of fairgrounds Horse Races - Grandstands Low Rider Races (in between horse races) – Grandstands Mutton Bustin’ – south end of fairgrounds Poultry Costume Contests – Poultry Barn Hippies on Vacation – Rotary Stage Market Livestock Sale – Berg Pavillion Davis Shows Northwest Carnival opens Raptors – Rotary Stage Nicole Unser – Rotary Stage Mutton Bustin’ – south end of fairgrounds Good4U – Rotary Stage Lead & Lace – Rotary Stage Truck & Tractor Pull – Grandstands Olson Brothers Band – Rotary Stage Fairgrounds closed to public

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 13, 2015 8:00 am 8:00 am 9:00 am All Day Throughout Day 10:00 am 10:00 am 11:00 am 11:00 am 11:00 am Noon Noon Noon 12:30 pm 1:00 pm 1:00 pm 1:00 pm 2:00 pm 3:00 pm

Cowboy Church services – Rotary Stage Rabbit Barn Awards – Rabbit Barn Fairgrounds open to the public Head & Horns Show – Commercial Building Horse Demonstrations: barefoot trimming, nutrition, tension release – Horse Barns Parade of Champions – Rotary Stage Davis Shows Northwest Carnival opens Horse Races – Grandstands Beef Team Showing Contest – Beef Show Ring Nicole Unser – Rotary Stage Kids Horse Playday – Rodeo Arena Raptors – Rotary Stage Sign-ups for Mutton Bustin’ Belt Buckle Finals (55 lb weight limit) – south end of fairgrounds Mutton Bustin’ Belt Buckle Finals – S. end of fairgrounds Camperos Dancing Horses – Grandstands Fur & Feather Auction – Berg Pavillion Dayton Edmonds, Storyteller – Rotary Stage Royalty Coronation – Rotary Stage Fairgrounds closed, Fair over!


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be grown out a little in time for fair. Suffolks are a breed favored for meat as opposed to fleece, but Jody Terris said she was able to donate the fleece last year to someone who wanted it. When asked if they would have sheep again next year, both girls nodded enthusiastically. “I thought about doing pigs one year, but I figured I may as well keep doing sheep, as I already know how to do this,” said Terris. At the Larson residence, Hayley and Alyssa still raise Suffolk Cross

sheep while middle sister Madi sticks to raising a Hampshire pig. This is the third year of raising livestock for Haley, age 15, and Madi, age 14; but just the second year for nine-year old Alyssa. The girls spoke of the different personalities observed in the animals they’ve raised. “This pig is not as good as the last two I had,” said Madi of her current pig, LaBron James. “Last year my pig would have been out here in the grass running around, but this one doesn’t like to come

out of his pen.” Perhaps that’s why a diet of sorts is in place. “The pig’s too big right now, so I’m holding him back,” said Madi August 7. “There’s a weight limit of 290 pounds. He was 217 pounds last week, and we still have another month to go before fair. They used to have a free feed, but now I just feed them two times a day.” Alyssa’s sheep, Patchouli, is described as calm and laid back. He likes people and likes to be

petted. Alyssa said she liked both get“My friends and I decided to ting to know the sheep over the do a Hippie theme at the fair this summer, and taking it to the fair year, so I looked up hippie names and showing it. “It’s just all fun.” with my mom,” said Alyssa. “We “I like the responsibility of saw ‘Patchouli’ taking care and I liked that of something one the best.” else instead of Ha y l e y ’s just me,” said sheep, named Hayley. “Plus, it ‘Alabama’ for makes me more the song ‘Sweet a part of FFA;” Home Alabama’ a class she “thinks he’s all said she really that and a bag enjoyed. of chips,” said The girls said his owner. “He that while they bucks a lot.” were too busy in “They get the winter with bucking someschool activities times in the to miss the livepen,” said stock, “When Alyssa. “I always it comes to say ours are the end of the ‘Circus Sheep.’” school year I’m “They all have Madi Larson’s Hampshire Pig ready for my great personali- named La Bron James enjoys cool- animal,” said ties and are fun ing down on a hot summer day by Hayley. to watch,” said sticking his face in the mud. “I was very Hayley. excited to get The different my sheep at personalities of the end of the the girls shows up a little in their school year, because it was such a answers to what they like best good experience last year,” Alyssa about raising an animal for fair. said, adding, “When I was little “It’s fun, and you learn a lot of I liked to visit friends at the fair responsibility,” said Madi. “Plus, I who had goats and I would hang really like pigs.” out with them.”

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Sisters Hayley and Alyssa Larson are enjoying getting to know their Suffulk Cross sheep Alabama and Patchouli.

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Community pitches in to help Chelan students who lost livestock in fire BY KATIE TEACHOUT


When the Chelan High School Agriculture teacher lost his home Aug. 14 in the fires blazing in and around Chelan, Matt Debach set up a Go Fund Me account to help FFA and 4H students recoup loses spent on livestock for the upcoming Chelan County Fair. “Mr. Rod Cool, the agriculture teacher at Chelan High School, is one of the most thoughtful and compassionate teachers in the state, so he was letting students who did not have a place to have a fair animal at their own home keep fair animals at his home,” said Deebach. “In this tragedy, many of the animals were lost.” Deebach, the agriculture teacher and FFA advisor for Tonasket, said he set the account up Saturday, Aug. 15, and within 11 hours they had reached their goal of raising $5,000 to help the kids. “It’s pretty amazing, we are flooded with emails and phone calls of people still wanting to donate,” said Deebach. The funding account was shut down after reaching it’s goal, but

Deebach and Cool are waiting to see what other needs are out there, before either opening that account back up or establishing a new fire relief fund. Deebach said that many kids who were able to save their livestock, lost pens that will have to be rebuilt. “We still don’t know what all the needs will be, and that area is still in danger,” Deebach said Monday, Aug. 17, adding, “The Manson 4H and FFA kids were evacuated last night, and Pateros might be evacuating. So basically, right now we are waiting to see what all the needs are.” Deebach said the National FFA had gotten in touch with him, as well as other area agriculture teachers, wanting to know what they could do to help. “It’s quite a sad deal. Rod Cool had animals at his house that he lost, because he was helping other people at their homes to get their animals out, and there just wasn’t time for him to go back to his house,” Deebach said. “Rod said he had insurance, so he knows there are a lot of people worse off than him.”

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Tonasket and Chelan FFA students. Several Chelan students lost their animals in the Chelan Fire.


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No more ‘stupid’ chickens This year it’s dwarf goats for Reagan and Rayan BY GARY A. DEVON EDITOR@GAZETTE-TRIBUNE.COM

OROVILLE - For this year’s fair project, Reagan Whiteaker and Rayan Sarmiento have decided to raise Nigerian Dwarf Goats. It appears Reagan, 11, has had enough of fowl creatures, admitting this year she wanted to raise something other than “stupid chickens.” Rayan, five, said the goat’s

names are Lucy and Tarzan and that they are a handful. “We feed them hay and grain,” said Reagan, the daughter of Danny Whiteaker. “And rotten peaches,” chimes in Rayan. The two say the goats pretty much have the run of the place, out at the lake side home of Reagan’s grandparents, Clyde and Joanne Whiteaker. They are fairly well-behaved they say, although Tarzan was a little camera shy. “We have to be careful though, we’ve seen a cougar and two kits out here,” said Rayan’s mom, Kristin Sarmiento. Why goats?

“You can walk them,” said Reagan, who adds that Tarzan has a tendency to pull and drag you if you let him get away with it. “One time I had both of them pull me,” she said. “I like to walk them, too,” adds Rayan. While some goats are raised for their fiber or milk and cheese, Nigerian Dwarf Goats are usually raised for their meat. However, the kids say they are fine with raising the pair because they aren’t going to the butcher. “This is a new experience for them,” said Rayan’s mom, who said this is the first year he has entered an animal at the fair.

Gary DeVon/staff photos

Reagan Whiteaker, 11, and Rayan Sarmiento, and their Nigerian Dwarf goats, Tarzan and Lucy. Tarzan proved to be a a little camera shy. Located at 16-A Hwy 7 (5 mi S on SR 97) Tonasket, WA

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SISTERS HEADING TO THE FAIR Among the items Mylee, 7, and Baylee Taber, 8, plan to exhibit at this year’s Okanogan County Fair are pears from the family orchard near Oroville. The girls also will be exhibiting other items from the garden, including watermelon. They say making things grow takes a lot of care, lots of sunlight and water, as well as making sure the fruits and vegetables are protected from pests. The two said they really enjoy going to the fair, seeing all the exhibits and appreciate coming from a multi-generational farming family, which includes their parents, David Jr. and Jaden Taber, aunt Angela Taber and grandparents, David Sr. and Judy Taber, owners and operators of Taber’s Taste of Summer Fruit Barn and Copper Mountain Winery.

Gary DeVon/staff photo




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County Fair - Okanogan County Fair 2015  


County Fair - Okanogan County Fair 2015