Swan

Iowa State Fair and Davis County Fair Queen Hailey Swan rides in the Ft. Bloomfield Rodeo Parade as onlookers are reminded that the Davis County Fair’s queen contest will be held Wednesday, July 17.

Hailey Swan, Davis County Fair Queen and Iowa State Fair Queen,  will give up her Davis County crown Wednesday, July 17, as she crowns the new DC Fair Queen at 7 p.m. in front of the Grandstand.

“There are four wonderful candidates,” she said. “The judges will have a tough time selecting the next queen.”

Swan took a few minutes over a lunch hour last week to talk about her duties as State Fair Queen.

“This has seriously been the quickest summer of my life. It’s hard to stop and soak it in when you’re going 90 miles an hour,” she said. “I have visited 10 county fairs so far, and I have 30 more lined up for the month of July with more to come.

Swan has only three days open in the month of July when she won’t be visiting a county fair, and August will be packed with Queen’s Week and the Iowa State Fair. “The first three days of the State Fair are done by the past queen,” she explained.

However, Swan’s duties won’t end with this year’s State Fair. She will be the queen’s chaperone in 2020 and will help with Queen’s Week in 2020 as well.

Swan said all county fairs are different and “it is neat to see the differences.”

She appreciates meeting all the girls that are running for fair queens around the state, but her travels also result in a deeper appreciation of the Davis County Fair. “This is a place where kids can come and for a week do what they love — show (their exhibits), just hang out, or be with their families. This is a place to get away from the world and get back to what matters — families,” she said.

Though Hailey has spent a lot of time away from home this summer, she hasn’t spent the time away from her family. Her parents, Shane and Kelly Swan, and sister Megan take turns traveling with her as State Fair regulations require she have a chaperone.

“Our vacation this year is Iowa without the bike. We’re having lots of family time,” she said.

“The previous queen told me I would see myself changing throughout the year, and she was right. This summer I definitely can see myself growing a greater sense of responsibility through scheduling, prioritizing and valuing others. It’s been a wonderful experience to grow up in this way.”

Swan said the thing she will miss most about being queen is all the “free” hugs from kids. “These little girls come up and say,  ‘You’re the Queen of the State Fair?’ and I reply, ‘Don’t you know that you are a princess, too?’ You don’t have to have a crown to be worthy!”

Swan said the best thing about the whole experience is being with fair people all the time. “They are so selfless. Getting to be with them and seeing their day-to-day schedules is eye-opening. They are role models,” she said. “Volunteering is not dead; it is very much alive!”

In spite of the hectic schedule, Swan works part time at Success Bank and is very thankful for their willingness to be flexible with her schedule. “They have a wonderful crew that I am blessed to be a part of,” she said.

She also expressed her deep gratitude to the entire community. “There is no other place I want to call home other than Davis County,” she said. “I’m thankful for the community members who’ve supported me through this journey.”