COLUMBIA – Cierra UrQuieta wasn't the least bit nervous about going on stage to tell the judges about her favorite things about the Boone County Fair.
Along with 19 other little girls wearing sun dresses and small bows in their hair and five polo clad boys, Cierra participated in the Little Mister and Miss Boone County Contest on Thursday night.
Besides being in the contest, the children seemed to have one other thing in common: they like to swim.
When asked how their summer was going, each contestant held the microphone and said “Good,” which was usually followed with “I like to swim.”
Cierra, 5, said her favorite parts of the fair so far are the “roller coasters, the Ferris wheel, and all the fun stuff.”
“The animals were great, but the zebra took my whole cup (of animal feed),” Cierra said while waiting for the contest to start.
On stage, some of the contestants were nervous, but Cierra held the microphone close and told the crowd just how nice her parents are and how — she said with a big grin — she likes her brother “all of the time.”
While the judges deliberated, she waved and blew animated kisses to her family from her chair on the stage.
Cierra ended up winning Little Miss with Elizabeth Edgar getting second place; Mackenzie March, third place; Haley Scofield, fourth place; Karma Vaughn, fifth place; and Sophia Corrado, sixth place.
“I’m so glad I won and I wish everyone could win too,” Cierra said with a beaming smile after she hopped off the stage.
The Little Mister contest took place after the Little Miss.
Ashton Kidd, 5, won Little Mister.
Ashton seemed shy at first but quickly grew accustomed to the limelight. He took a deep breath and proclaimed his favorite thing at the fair to be the stick horse racing.
Before his interview ended he recited a poem called "I am an acorn, small and round," to the crowd. After the contest he said he learned it at preschool.
“It was awesome just seeing how he acted with the kids and the judges,” Ashton's mom, Christy Wingate-Kidd, said.
When the judges began to announce the winners, Ashton was initially slated at fifth place. Suddenly another judge jumped on the stage and, after some whispering, took a green prize bag away from Ashton, claiming there was an error.
The 5-year-old's face fell, but he waited bravely as they reannounced the correct placements. On the second try, he was awarded a yellow bag for earning the title of Little Mister.
Aiden Boyce, second place; Carter Salter, third Place; Tanner Lanes, fourth place; and Aidan Ferrao, fifth place.
“I knew I was going to get the crown,” Ashton Kidd said. “I just knew it.”
Each contestant received a prize bag for participating. The Little Mister and Miss each won 10 dollars, a prize bag and will be introduced at the Society Horse Show Wednesday. They will also be handing out ribbons in the morning on July 31.
“I said, ‘Christy, we need to enter him into the fair,’” Gloria Wingate said. “So we drove over and put him in at the last moment.”