EL CENTRO – The ordinary was mixed up Thursday evening as festive Mardi Gras colors and lights filled the Community Center here as the monthly Chamber Mixer held the 2016 Mardi Gras Royal Coronation.
“The main goal today was to honor and respect two individuals that have really given back to the community. They represent the community very well,” said Richard Morales, a chamber director. “They provided not only a positive outlook for the city itself, but for themselves and for their families, their friends and everyone they know. It is well deserved, in my opinion”.
“I think the outcome was very well received,” said master of ceremonies, Joe Montenegro, and past Mardi Gras 2014 king. “I’m really excited about the parade. It’s going to be a wonderful event. It’s a signature event for the city of El Centro.”
Royalties from 2008 – 2015 were called to the stage to give their blessings to the new King and Queen, followed by the 2016 Hospitality Award, presented by the Chamber of Commerce, to the Mayor of El Centro, Jason Jackson for his work in the community.
The finale was the presentation of the 2016 Mardi Gras King and Queen, Sedalia and Albert Sanchez, and a reading of their many accomplishments.
After being dressed in royal regalia of a shiny crown and purple robe, the couple accepted the proclamation for the parade from Mayor Jason Jackson.
“I’d like to thank the Mayor, Mr. Jackson, my former colleagues, and if others are there, I’m sorry if I can’t recognize you from here,” said Sedalia Sanders. “It’s not because I can’t recognize you, it’s because my eyes are filled with tears of joy.”
“I would like to thank all of you that have selected my wife to be the queen, and I’m glad you considered the husband to be the king. I talked to some of the married people out there and they were saying, ‘You might be a king today, but you know what you are the rest of the year, don’t you?'” said Albert Sanders.
Raffle prizes were donated from local business such as Sizzlers and Styles & Smiles. Closing remarks were given by the Master of Ceremonies, Joe Montenegro, encouraging everyone to attend the parade.
“Every year it gets bigger and bigger,” said Ruth Montenegro, the 2014 Queen of Mardi Gras. “You see bigger crowds and more vendors. The floats are better and they outdo themselves every single year. What we can expect is a bigger and better event.”
The Mardi Gras 2016 Light Parade & Street Festival will be held February 20th in the El Centro Civic Center Area from 5pm to 10pm.[envira-gallery id=”71131″]