VIDEO: Meet Our 2020 Maple Queen Erin Brendel


Hey Highland! I’m Erin Brendel. Today, you’re going to learn a little bit about me – your 2020 Highland County Maple Queen.

Let’s read some questions!

A Viewer’s Question: What does a young lady do with her free time in Highland County?

Well, recently, with the coronavirus, of course, we’ve all had a lot of time on our hands, and I’ve been doing a lot of work at the pool, at The Curly Maple… Anywhere that I can work… But, I’ve also been spending a lot of time with my farm animals – my two goats, my two hogs, and my 15 chickens… that’s always fun…

Name a place you want to visit someday, and why?

I would love to visit New Zealand because I’ve seen so many cool pictures of the humongous fields, and the huge mountains, and the great views. And, I hope to sit in a field of goats… that’s my true dream.

Besides Maple Syrup, what is your favorite thing about Highland County?

My favorite thing about Highland County is the wonderful community cause it’s so close, and everybody knows everybody, so we’re always there for each other whenever we’re in need.

What is your favorite food? And, give an example of how much you love it.

My favorite food is cheese because it’s the best food ever. My favorite cheese, right now, is provolone, but my overall, all-time favorite is colby and monterey jack. It’s delicious.

What are some things you’d like to do in your future?

In the future, I would like to go to Mars Hill University to become a trauma nurse, so that I can work in the emergency rooms and help with critical patients whenever they really need help the most.

What is your favorite subject in school?

My favorite subject in school is band. In the actual band, I play the wind instrument – a bass clarinet. But, I’m also trying to learn how to play piano. I play the ukulele a little bit. I’m going to start learning the guitar. I can play the dulcimer. My little cousin is trying to teach me how to play the banjo. I can play a few instruments, and once you learn one, it’s pretty easy to pick up some other ones. I played a guit-ulele, which is three strings from a guitar and three strings from a ukulele. That’s really fun, but the ukulele strings are really skinny, and it really hurts my fingers.

If you could have any superpower, what would it be?

It would definitely be time traveling because I’m not a fan of driving in long car rides. And, of course, it takes an hour-and-a-half to get groceries from Wal-mart, so I’d love to be able to time-travel, so you don’t have to make a whole day out of getting food.

What advice would you give to young girls growing up in America today?

I would tell young girls today, don’t worry about what everyone’s saying about you. Either it’s bad or it’s good. If it’s good, great! Feel good about yourself. But, if it’s bad, don’t worry about it. It’s one person’s opinion, and it’s probably wrong. They’re probably just upset that they aren’t you.

Do you have any farm animals?

I have two goats – one named “Bailey,” and one named “Sheep.” And, I have two pigs – one named “Pringle,” and one named “Babe.” And, I have 15 chickens that I can’t tell apart, so they don’t have names. I also have a cat, but she’s not a farm animal. Her name’s “Bella.”

What is your favorite hobby?

My favorite hobby is definitely clogging. I’ve been doing it since I was six years old… I’m 15 now… so that’s… 6, 7, 8, 9… nine years!! I’ve been doing it for nine years. I can do math… sometimes… It’s the summer… I don’t worry about it too much now. Anyway! I’ve been clogging for nine years now, and four of those years, I’ve been dancing with Rhythmic Alliance. But, the whole nine, I’ve been doing it with the Little Switzerland Cloggers here in Highland County, Virginia. I love clogging so much. I get to do it with all my best friends.

And my second favorite hobby is softball. I didn’t actually get to play this year because of the coronavirus, but hopefully next year… or the year after that… I’m kinda running out of time. But I hope I get to play softball again. It’s really fun, and I love my coaches, and I love my teammates.

What would you like to say to the young people in Highland County?

I would like to say that I know everyone’s so anxious to get up and move and go on to bigger places, but you gotta always remember that this is where you came from, this is where your family is, and just don’t forget your roots! I mean, it’s a beautiful place, and I’m just so glad to be from here, and I definitely won’t ever forget this place.

That’s the last question… Thanks for joining and listening to learn a little bit about me. I’m the 2020 Highland County Maple Queen Erin Brendel. Thanks for watching!


Hey everyone! I’m Dorothy with Thanks for tuning in to this video. We hope you enjoyed it. For more great content on Highland County, please visit Thanks!




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