EAST AMWELL, NJ - This year’s Hunterdon County 4-H and Agricultural Fair Ambassador is Avery Lane Schaefer, 17, of West Amwell.
She was crowned during the Fair’s Opening Ceremonies and will serve until the 2020 Fair, helping promote it and agriculture in general. One of Avery’s next major activities will be participating in the contest to choose the State Fair Ambassador. That will take place at the fall meeting of the New Jersey Fairs Association, in November.
She received her crown from Lianna Bonacorsi of Franklin Township (Hunterdon County), the 2018 Hunterdon Fair Ambassador and current State Fair Ambassador. Avery, 17, is a daughter of Steve and Jeanne Schaefer. They live near the Fair location, Roger K. Everitt Fairgrounds at South County Park, and appropriately call their little spread Fairview Farm.
She was selected from a field of four “extremely well-qualified” young women, said Jo-an’ Van Doren Beck, former Hunterdon 4-H member and current member the Fair Board of Directors. Jessie Ditzel, from Ringoes, was chosen her alternate and will fill in for any events Avery cannot attend. Also participating in the contest were Lauren Ann Benson of Ringoes and Ashlee Gibbons of Flemington.
Avery has been an extremely active member of the 4-H program. She is a member of the Spot On Shooters, Goat Club, Round Valley Riders and Junior Leaders. She attended the National 4-H Shooting sports in Grand Island, Neb. for the past two years, was selected to participate in the 4-H Citizenship Washington Focus in the nation’s capital last year and will attend the National Club Congress in Atlanta at the end of November. At South Hunterdon High, she is president of the Key Club, a community service program. Other service activities include being a member of the Pink Ladies 4-H Riding team, a group of seven who ride horses to raise money for breast cancer research.
Jessie Ditzel, her alternate, is also a member of the Pink Ladies team. As a very dedicated member, she dyed her hair pink, and some other team members followed her lead. Jessie is also involved with the Spot On Shooters, Goat Club and Junior Leaders. Also very community-minded, she collected more than 300 used children’s books and donated them to a food pantry.
Lauren Benson has been in the Kick Butt Kids Goat Club and the Spot on Shooters Sports Club. She is involved with dance, her school’s orchestra and fiddle club, and volunteers with many 4-H projects.
Ashlee Gibbons is an active member of the Mount Airy 4-H Dairy Club and is currently a county Dairy Ambassador, helping the Dairy Princess promote the use of milk and milk products. She is president of the Hunterdon Hogs 4-H Club. She is also actively involved in the FFA program at Hunterdon Polytech, currently the chapter secretary.