2018 GJCF Princess title goes to Jessi Welter

The 2018 GJCF Princess title went to Jessi Welter (right) of Monticello. Welter was also named Miss Congeniality by her fellow queen candidates. Pictured are 2018 GJCF Queen Marissa Recker, pageant organizer Marcia Kray and Welter. (Photo by Kim Brooks)
Hannah Gray
Express Intern

     After winning Miss Congeniality, being crowned the 2018 Great Jones Fair Princess came as a complete surprise to Jessi Welter.

     Welter decided to compete for fair queen after the GJCF Queen Pageant Director, Marcia Kray, asked her if she would like to run.         

     “I know a lot of the girls who ran have had a very positive experience so that definitely helped,” said Welter.

     While in the running for fair queen, Welter enjoyed the pageant the most. She said all the girls were very supportive of each other and willing to help when needed.

     “Like buckling each other’s shoes or if someone’s tag is sticking out or spraying hairspray for someone,” she said. “Little things like that definitely made it a very positive day.”

     Welter said running and being crowned fair princess has helped her develop better speaking and interview skills. She mentioned how Kray has pushed them to go up on stage and introduce themselves and talking to many of the people at the fair has helped her become more confident.

     “We practiced a lot with interview questions, even using a microphone and that helped a lot,” said Welter.

     Because Welter lives in Monticello, she has been going to the fair for a very long time. In past years, she worked at the entrance gate of the fair, greeting fairgoers, taking tickets and handing out wristbands.

     Welter said her favorite part of the fair is the pineapple whip, which is served at one of the food vendors on the midway. She even based her pageant skit around the tasty treat.

     When asked if she thinks other girls should run for fair queen, Welter said she highly recommends it.

     “We’ve already started recruiting. We even made a list of girls,” she joked.

     Welter is the daughter of Ron and Lori Welter of Monticello. She attends the University of Northern Iowa, where she will be a sophomore this fall. She is studying human resources and business communications and plans to graduate in December of 2020.



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