By Bill Schock
The moon wasn’t shining but the stage sure was for the crowning of Casey McNealy, l7-year-old HTRS High School senior, as queen and John Cander, who had been one of the state’s top dairymen, king of the Richardson County Fair and Humboldt Fall Festival, at the coronation program Wednesday night, Sept. l0, at the Humboldt Square.
It was the 90th anniversary of the Richardson County Fair.
Crowning the Fair’s royalty was Lance Schwartz of Lincoln TV station KOLN/KGIN. (Schwartz then featured the Fair and Coronation Program on his Friday night segment of “Lance’s Journal” on tv Channel l2.)
The queen is the daughter of Jack and Linda McNealy of Humboldt and Ron and Linda Hunzeker of Table Rock. Casey is active in numerous activities at Humboldt High, including the National Honor Society, and during the summer works as a lifeguard at the Humboldt swimming pool. During the school year she works at R & D Grocery. Casey plans to attend the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and major in accounting.
John Canter was born July 26, 143 to John and Bernice (Buman) Cander. King John attended the Kinter rural school, located just west of the Canter farm for one year before it closed. He complted his education at Humboldt High School graduating with the class of 1961. He attended the University of Nebraska at Lincoln Ag College graduating in 1966, with a degree in dairy science.
It was during the years of commuting to Lincoln that he met a fellow commuter – Alberta Gerdes, also of Humboldt. The couple married in 1968 and have two children, daughter Susanne and son, Thomas. John’s Cander Dairy, south of Humboldt, dates from 1949 to 2009, when he retired. It was one of first Class A dairies in the county. During his 60 years as a dairyman he received numerous production awards. John retired from the dairy in 2009, and maintains a small herd of hobby cows. These are the result of the grandchildren. Mati and Andy Stalder’s 4-H calves that somehow become mature cows for grandpa.
King John is still engaged in farming with a few acres of pumpkins. The pumpkins are all generously shared with the nursing home, school, library and the Chamber’s Halloween celebration John is a member of the Richardson County Agricultural Society as well as serving on the board of the Humboldt rural fire district. The Canders are members of the Humboldt United Methodist Church.
Queen Casey (143,510,913 votes) was escorted by Jacob Phillips, a senior at HTRS.
Whitney Ramsey, a HTRS junior, (117,905,987 votes) was first runnerup in the queen competition and she was escorted by Sawyer Kean, a senior at Falls City Sacred Heart. Second runnerup was Haley Ann Workman, HTRS senior (82,666,355 votes). Her escort was Schuyler Kuhlman, a senior at HTRS. Nicole Fiegner, a senior at Sacred Heart (69,9l3,948 votes), was third runnerup and her escort was Elliott Gonnella, an HTRS senior. The fourth runnerup was Rebecca Blecha (21,850,841 votes) and escorting her was Brady Wilkerson. Both of them are seniors at HTRS.
The junior attendants were: Miranda Jane Rist, escorted by Kameon Michael Dettmann, and Chloe Marie Shupp, escorted by her brother, Reed James Shupp.
County Judge Curtis Maschman was the master of ceremonies. The coronation program’s theme was “There’s No Place Like Home.” Humboldt Mayor Mike Riley presented keys to the City of Humboldt to last year’s royalty, Lindsay Harlow and Jon Larson. Humboldt Chamber of Commerce President Diane Merwin introduced Marion Kay Leech as Humboldt’s “Woman of the Year.” Following the coronation ceremony the program featured students of the Humboldt/Table Rock/Steinauer school system.