Nancy Triplett (left) and Ruth Reed (right)

The Covered Bridge Festival Committee has selected life-long friends, Nancy Triplett and Ruth Reed, as Queens of the 2021 Covered Bridge Festival.

“We are excited to be able to host the Covered Bridge Festival after canceling in 2020 due to COVID-19. Our committee selected Nancy and Ruth to honor all of their generosity and volunteer efforts in Madison County. We believe that these life-long friends represent our theme, ReUnited,” said Executive Director, Amara Huffine.

Ruth Reed moved to Winterset with her husband, Tom Reed, and their two children, Steve and Annette back in the 1960s. Tom was the manager of the meat department at Fareway. Ruth became an active member of the Presbyterian Church, serving on the Board and in many other capacities over the last 50 years. She has been active in the Chamber of Commerce, the Friends of the Winterset Public Library, the local Republican party, and many other organizations. She has given generously to many causes and fundraisers over the years, and instilled a sense of community service in her children, as well. She volunteers at Madison Square, as well. She is a local fixture at the John Wayne Birthplace and Museum, where she has given tours and has worked for many, many years, becoming an invaluable source of information for all things John Wayne. She and Tom were involved in the early days of the Covered Bridge Festival and volunteered frequently over the years at many of the festivals.

Nancy Triplett moved to Winterset with her husband, Jerry, and their five kids, Chris, Lori, Dennis, Robin and Tracey, also in the 1960s. Jerry was the guidance counselor at the high school. Nancy became an active member of the First Christian Church, serving in many capacities, including children’s choir director, Board member, worship leader, and treasurer over the last 50 years. She has been active in the Friends of the Winterset Public Library, and has volunteered at the Madison County Healthcare System and the Madison County Historical Society. She was heavily involved in school activities at Winterset, while raising her children. She is active in the local Democratic party, and other organizations. She has given to many causes over the years, including the Winterset High School Track renovation and the maze at the City Park. She has also actively volunteered at many Covered Bridge festivals in various ways, and she and her family used to sing at the festival every year.

Ruth and Nancy became good friends, while raising their kids and living across the street from each other for many years. They have remained close friends, and can usually be found walking through Winterset City Park three to four times a week, to maintain their health and their active lifestyles. Ruth and Nancy represent what is best in our community, women of faith, strong and independent and caring women, who continue to support those around them, even after the loss of their husbands. They are proud to have built their lives in Madison County, and continue to work tirelessly for others, and to demonstrate love and compassion for everyone, including each other. Given the times we live in, it is heartening and encouraging to see two people with different perspectives, who can “bridge” those differences and respect and love each other as neighbors and show the rest of us what is possible.

Past Festival Kings & Queens:

2021 — Ruth Reed and Nancy Triplett, Winterset

2020 — No festival was held due to COVID-19 pandemic

2019 — Rich Mills & Mayumi Ameku

2018 — Otto & Maxine Bussanmus

2017 — Larry & Yvonne Ory, Earlham

2016 — Bill Paull & Glenna Finney, Winterset

2015 — Larry & Doris Downs, St. Charles

2014 — Bob & Phyllis Kaldenberg, Winterset

2013 — Jim & Pat Nelson, Winterset

2012 — Carolyn Farr & Don Pettit, Winterset

2011 — Charles & Berta Kordick, Winterset

2010 — Hal & Harriett Jackson, Winterset

2009 — Willard & Eva Short, Winterset

2008 — Charles & Margaret Blair

2007 — Eddie & Daisy Dell Benge, Winterset

2006 — Dwayne & Edna Honnold, Winterset

2005 — Russell & Shirley Leeper, Earlham

2004 — Marion & Bernita Patience

2003 — George & Ethel Berry

2002 — Gary & Shirley Allen, Winterset

2001 — Jack & Florence Thomas

2000 — Mel & Bev Penrod, Winterset

1999 — Marlin & Gretchen Brittain

1998 — Ival & Edith Mease

1997 — Estel & Juanita Welch

1996 — George & Pat Montross

1995 — Gene & Evelyn Trask, Winterset

1994 — Robert & Esther Pilmer, Winterset

1993 — Jim & Wessie Breeding, Winterset

1992 — Lee & Polly Huffman, Winterset

1991 — Ruth Tucker & Lewis Morris, Winterset

1990 — John & Ruth Gorman, Winterset

1989 — R.D. & Maxine Wilson, St. Charles

1988 — Lee & Esther Wheeler, Lorimor

1987 — Carroll & Irene Beverlin, Peru

1986 — Lloyd & Beth Sankey, Winterset

1985 — Bill & Velda Morse, Winterset

1984 — Maurice & Alice Lynch, Cumming

1983 — Les & Beulah Goeldner, Earlham

1982 — Sid & Inez Hartman, Winterset

1981 — Guy & Fern Fogler, Patterson

1980 — Ralph Minard & Mae Lane, Truro

1979 — Frank & Loreah Wilson, Earlham

1978 — Charles & Lois Clark, Winterset

1977 — “Dugan” Eivins & Bertha McKinzie, Macksburg

1976 — Mr. & Mrs. Carl Downs (Wilma), St. Charles

1975 — Mr. & Mrs. Roy Anker, Earlham

1974 — Grace Breeding & Francis Carlson, St. Charles & Truro

1973 — Inez Townsend & Frank Comp, Winterset

1972 — Mr. & Mrs. C.A. (Lon) Clark, Winterset

1971 — Mr. & Mrs Wayne Crow, Winterset

1970 — None