County Fair Queen Linda Skeens Revealed! Viral Sensation Appears on 'Today'

The legendary Linda Skeens emerged from obscurity to share some of her blue-ribbon recipes.

Virginia Kentucky District Fair
Photo: Virginia Kentucky District Fair

Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, and Linda Skeens.

Skeens, the 74-year-old from Russell County, Virginia, became a viral sensation after dominating the Virginia-Kentucky District Fair this year. The humble grandma swept the Baked Goods category, nabbed many of the spots in Canned Foods, and even placed in the Embroidery and Wall Décor categories. In total, Skeens won 25 separate ribbons at the annual VaKy Fair.

Though she's been cooking and baking for more than 50 years, the legend of Linda Skeens was born just last month, on June 13, when this year's winners were announced on VaKy Fair's Facebook page.

"They should rename it the Linda Skeens VA KY District Fair…" one user commented.

"Linda Skeens- Marie Callendar called," another chimed in. "They wanna know if you could show Sharon how to bake a pie."

"If Chuck Norris was a woman, he would be Linda," one commenter joked.

From Facebook to TikTok, the story of Skeens rippled across the internet. The people wanted more Linda. There was just one problem: nobody could find her.

After rampant speculation, we're finally able to put a face to a name. Last week, Skeens made her very first television appearance on Today.

"I don't know what to think about it," she said. "I've been cooking and doing this for, what, 50-some years and so I don't understand why there's such a big deal, but anyway, I appreciate it."

Skeens, who has three children, five grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren, demonstrated her recipes for her peanut butter fudge, strawberry jam, brownies, peach hand pies, chow chow, and Mexican cornbread.

"I cook country and I cook to eat," Skeens, who has won over 450 ribbons at state fairs and cooking competitions over the past decade, explained on Today.

In an interview with radio host Mason Mousette, Skeens shared that she was diagnosed with leukemia in December, but that the treatment she's on is working and that cooking for her friends and family helps. Winning helps too.

When asked if she has a competitive side on Today, Skeens responded, "I do. You can ask my friends when I play Spades on Saturday nights. I play to win."

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