CHATHAM – Representatives of Columbia County’s six public high schools will compete for the title of 2017 Schoolgirl Queen on Friday, September 1, continuing a Columbia County Fair tradition that has endured for 80 years.

At 6:00 p.m., the gowned contestants will arrive in vintage convertibles at the stage in front of the grandstand, where they will be introduced by emcees Meg Dooley and Cathie Lee Visscher.

Judging is based on personality, poise and appearance. The winner will be crowned by last year’s Schoolgirl Queen, Marissa O’Dell of Ichabod Crane High School, and receive a $500 prize.

Here are this year’s contestants:

Miss Taconic Hills

Taconic Hills High School is represented by Alexandria Shumsky of Claverack, daughter of Stephen and Jennifer Shumsky.

In school, she participates in field hockey, basketball, softball, Art Club, National Honor Society, the Taconic Hills Fashion Show, Future Farmers of America, and is class secretary. She helps coach youth basketball and Little League.

Alexandria’s hobbies include drawing, painting, camping, making clothing from recycled materials, hiking, teaching children to ski, and running.


Miss New Lebanon

Representing New Lebanon High School is Dakota Kubli of East Nassau, daughter of Holly and William Trong.

She likes art, drawing, playing ukulele, singing, baking, makeup artistry, and yoga. In school, she participates in volleyball, choir, Literary Arts Club, Spanish Club, and National Honor Society. Dakota’s favorite school subject is world history.


Miss Ichabod Crane

Debra McKinney of Valatie, daughter of Anna C. Mitcalf and Wesley S. McKinney, represents Ichabod Crane High School.

Science is her favorite school subject. Debra is in chorus and School of Rock Club. She enjoys singing, writing, TV, video games, reading, and forensic anthropology.


Miss Hudson High

Representing Hudson High School is Shelbi Neal of Ghent, daughter of Rob Neal and Ruth Neal.

She participates in school volleyball, National Honor Society, concession stand, and fund-raising activities.

Shelbi also enjoys cheerleading, babysitting, volunteering, swimming, and yoga.


Miss Germantown

Emily Nack of Elizaville, daughter of William and Amy Nack, represents Germantown Central School.

Her favorite school subject is social studies, and she lists homework, “anything technology related,” programming, video editing, and singing as favorite activities outside of school.

At Germantown, Emily participates in acapella, Drama Club, basketball, and coding.


Miss Chatham

Representing Chatham High School is Kaylin Meyer of Chatham, the daughter of Dawn and Steve Meyer.

Her favorite school subject is science, and she participates in the school choir, All County choir, and high school musical.

Kaylin’s outside interests include theater, nature, singing, and running.


Held annually over Labor Day weekend at the Columbia County Fairgrounds in Chatham, this year’s Fair runs from Wednesday, August 30, through Monday, September 4.