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Branderhorst reflects on pork queen role

Bre Branderhorst has had an incredible year as Iowa's 2013 Pork Queen. She enjoys 
her duties so much, that she considers kissing the big boar at the 2013 Iowa State 
Fair one of her highlights.
Bre Branderhorst has had an incredible year as Iowa's 2013 Pork Queen. She enjoys her duties so much, that she considers kissing the big boar at the 2013 Iowa State Fair one of her highlights.

“I wanted to be the Pork Queen growing up,” were the words Breanna Branderhorst, who goes by Bre, said in one of her first interviews after being crowned the 2013 Iowa Pork Queen.

That was nine months ago. Since then, Bre’s experience has proven the old addage, “time flies when you’re having fun” is true.

“It has been an absolute honor to serve as the 2013 Iowa Pork Queen, so far,” she said. “Because I have had so many amazing experiences, I don’t think I could pinpoint one ‘best experience.’ I love being able to talk to consumers and tell them about what is going on in the industry and also being able to meet with people within the industry.”

Helping promote Iowa’s pork industry is a part of Bre’s duties and has allowed her to experience some pretty unique opportunities.

“Some of my favorite memories are serving samples at the National BBQ Battle in Washington, D.C., kissing the big boar at the State Fair and helping pull baby pigs at the State Fair,” Bre said. “Being an agriculture education major, I loved the opportunity to work in the Animal Learning Center at the State Fair because it was a chance to teach people about a topic that I am very passionate about.”

The Prairie City native also took part in Newton’s Fourth of July Parade and has been involved in other pork-related activities, such as the World Pork Expo, Iowa Pork Youth Conferences and the Iowa Pork Congress. Pork isn’t the only thing taking up Bre’s spare time, though.

This fall, Bre started her sophomore year at Iowa State University and maintains a pretty busy schedule.

“This year has definitely given me the opportunity to improve on my time management skills,” she said. “I’m involved with quite a few clubs on campus including Block & Bridle, CFFA, College of Ag and Life Sciences Ambassadors and Sigma Alpha and I hold leadership roles in most of them.”

“I’m also on the Iowa State University Meat Judging Team,” she continued. “Being involved on- and off-campus has definitely helped me improve my time management and organization skills.”

With her classes, Pork Queen duties and occasional examination of animal carcasses, some wonder, what does Iowa’s Pork Queen do in her down time?

“To relax, I listen to music, hang out with my friends and bake,” Bre said. She added she likes listening to country and Christian music, and some of her other favorite passtimes are to showcase animals and meet new people.

Unlike a lot of college students, she already knows what she wants to do once she finishes school.

“After graduation, I plan to find a job teaching high school agriculture and science and advising an FFA Chapter,” she said.

Jan. 22, a new Iowa Pork Queen will be crowned and Bre will be present at the ceremony. She seems content, however, with how her reign has transpired.

“Being the 2013 Iowa Pork Queen has been an eventful, wonderful opportunity that I am extremely grateful for and I wouldn’t change a thing,” she said.

Staff writer Ty Rushing may be contacted at (641) 792-3121, ext. 426, or at

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