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Howard teen takes title as Md. State Fair opens

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Rebecca Hamilton of Lisbon was named Miss Maryland Agriculture 2005 Friday evening on the opening day of the Maryland State Fair in Timonium.

Hamilton, 16, was chosen to compete for the state title when she was named Miss Howard County Farm Bureau this month. The contest included participants from 23 counties, the largest group of competitors in six years.

"I think this is going to be an incredible opportunity for me throughout the year," said Hamilton, who plans to visit every county in Maryland to increase awareness of agriculture.

Hamilton is a junior at Glenelg High School and lives on a 5-acre livestock farm. She has been active in 4-H livestock activities since she was 6 years old and currently belongs to two 4-H clubs and a nationally competitive livestock judging team.

For more than 60 years, the contest's winners were named Farm Queens, with the current name instituted in 2004. Contestants are judged on poise, knowledge of agriculture and other criteria.

Hamilton, who received scholarships and cash awards valued at $9,000, will meet with fairgoers and dignitaries at the fair, which runs through Sept. 5.

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