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Report for America is a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms to report on under-covered issues and communities.

Winnebago County Fair Ambassador Jumps Right Into Her New Role

Yvonne Boose

The Winnebago County Fair was canceled due to COVID-19. This included the County Fair's Queen pageant. Instead, an ambassador was appointed Tuesday evening.  

Joie Vittetow volunteered at the Rockford Park District’s Youth Police Academy this week. This is one of many events that she will attend during her time as ambassador.

“And this weekend, I’m hoping to go the Burpee Museum event for ‘Girls in Science.’ Where they’re going to be demonstrating insects and stuff,” she shares. “Other than that, I’ll be definitely doing parades if they’re not canceled.” 

She said she’s always supported the queens.  

“When our queen went downstate, I went down there with her to help her support,” she said. “I also was supporting the whole county system and just wanted to represent the county. And I was really just trying to put my effort in giving her ideas.” 

She said she does this work because she wants the younger generation to have a better future.    

Vittetow said she started doing pageantry two years ago. She was first runner up in last year’s pageant.  

Vittetow studies mechanical engineering at Northern Illinois University. She is also an artist. She said she just finished her first mural on a wall outside of Cherry Valley Laundromat.  

  • Yvonne Boose is a 2020 corps member for Report for America, an initiative of the GroundTruth Project. It's a national service program that places talented journalists in local newsrooms like WNIJ. You can learn more about Report for America at wnij.org.