County Fair Young Women in Excellence

Our ward had the most wonderful YW in Excellence last night! We had a "County Fair" in the cultural hall. YW and their parents were invited to attend dressed in their country best (overalls, denim shirts & levis, etc.). As we entered, the room was set up like a county fair with balloons, posters, quilts on the floor, etc. Music from "Oklahoma" and "State Fair" played loudly on a cassette recorder and some of the leaders brought around caramel apples, popcorn and homemade rootbeer for us to enjoy as we viewed the displays. Seven table surrounded the room, each decorated in individual value colors. Displayed on the tables were the projects the YW had been working on during the year, each tagged with a ribbon in the corresponding value color.

A clown did some balloon tricks and told jokes, getting everyone to mingle and to feel included as they arrived. She was the M.C. for the evening. We began with a prayer with everyone sitting on the quilts on the floor. The judges were introduced (us as a stake YW presidency) and the first event of the evening began. A fish pond was set up near the Faith table and 4-5 YW names were drawn out of a hat by the M.C. -- However, there were no names written on the little folded papers placed in the top hat - they were all blank. The names for each event were typed on a 3x5 card which was taped to the table where they were not visible to everyone - so the girls were pre-assigned to each event without their knowledge. As each of the girls received her "fish" (a little packet of candy), she was introduced by her mother or father who told a little about her and explained what her project was, why she chose it, and what value it represented. Also, the definition of each value was introduced a the beginning of each activity.

Divine Nature was a sewing contest -- Fruit Loops were strung on yarn by the selected YW and their parents while they were wearing heavy work gloves. As judges, we would interrupt the contest every minute or so and declare a winner ("most meticulous stringer", "fastest", etc. - we just made up the categories as we went along). Then that parent would introduce their daughter in the same manner as with the fish pond.

Individual Worth was a pie eating contest (no hands). Knowledge was a donut eating contest - again no hands. Donuts were strung from a simple wooden stand and the contestants had to try to eat the donut the fastest. Choice and Accountability was a cake walk. The judges would call out whatever number the YW happened to be standing on as the music stopped each time and the parent would again spotlight their child, until all the YW in this particular activity were introduced. The awards for this activity were gaudily decorated cupcakes.

The funniest event was the Turkey Shoot for Good Works. One of the parents was chosen to wear a paper "turkey beak" which opened and closed, complete with a big red waddle on the bottom. The parents had to walk back and forth behind a long banquet table as their daughters tried to shoot them with nerf guns. Our bishop was one of the dads and it was just hilarious to see him trying to be dignified in his suit and tie (he had just come from a meeting with the stake presidency) wearing a turkey beak and trying not to get shot by his daughter -- all the while the other parents were trying to hide behind him so they wouldn't get shot!

Unfortunately, we had another meeting we had to attend and missed the conclusion of the evening. I understand there was not another event for Integrity, so maybe we didn't miss much after all.

Anyway, it was a very fun evening and each girl was spotlighted and awarded for her efforts in preparing a project and working on her Personal Progress. By the way, the projects were wonderful -- not just thrown together at the last minute, but we could tell that they had been carefully planned and many hours were spent in their completion. It was great.

Joyce
Salem Utah Stake YW

(Source: Young Women in Excellence)

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