HOLTVILLE — For the second year in a row, the royal crown of the Carrot Festival queen remains in the Allegranza family marking a milestone in the 70-year history of the Carrot Festival.
Emily Allegranza, 18, last year’s Carrot Festival queen, placed the crown on her younger sister, Sadie Allegranza, 16, who bested four other candidates to become the 2017 Carrot Festival’s royalty during the coronation night at Imperial Palms Hotel and Resort at Barbara Worth in Holtville.
“This is great,” said the girls’ mother, Rosie Allegranza, smiling. “I don’t think it’s ever been done before that a sister has crowned her younger sister to be queen. We think this is the first time this ever happened since the beginning of the Carrot Queen Festival.”
Sadie Allegranza, a sophomore at Holtville High School, is active in 4-H, Campus Life and the youth group at Cornerstone Church. She is an honor roll student and her favorite subject is mathematics.
The other candidates vying for the queen were Jasmine Marie Montejano, McKenzie Peeks, Priscella Rendon and Brenna Stewart.
Mayah Taylor, 8, surpassed two other candidates and was selected the 2017 Carrot Festival junior princess. The other candidates were Emma Britschgi and Aaliyah Acosta. Taylor is a second grade student at Meadows Union School. Being athletic, she plays soccer with the lady Pumas and practices gymnastics at Firestorm. She attends St. Joseph Church and prefers to be with her family and friends on weekends.
Anne Britschgi, 14, was the only candidate and consequently was selected as the 2017 Carrot Festival princess. A freshmen at Holtville Highs School, Britschgi plays tennis with the Varsity tennis team and will try out for track and field. According to the Carrot Festival booklet, Britschgi is certified in CPR and First Aid. She is active with Verde 4-H and has many animals under her care.
At the start of the evening, master of ceremonies Mark Allegranza welcomed the 200 guests who attended the evening’s coronation for the 2017 Carrot Festival junior princess, princess, and queen.
It was followed by an invocation and dinner. Allegranza introduced the guests of honor, including the parade grand marshals, and the recipient of the president’s award.
The Grand Marshals for the Carrot Festival Parade are Dave Garcia and Ruben Najera.
Garcia is an artist whose work had appeared in Archie Comic’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Adventures and the Panda Khan stories. His artworks have been used by a wide variety of businesses. He is a graphic illustrator for the Holtville Tribune and editorial cartoon contributor to the Imperial Valley Press. His latest accomplishment is the graphic novel on a supernatural western called “Shadow of the West.” In 2015, Garcia received the highest honor, the Inkpot Award, from the San Diego Comic-Con for outstanding achievement in the comic book field.
Najera, a native of El Centro, is a professional skateboarder. He is also a writer and an actor. He was a guest at the San Diego Comic Con, and was the one of the founding members of the Desert Skate Park in El Centro.
Master of ceremonies Allegranza also introduced Mary Bornt, this year’s recipient of the Holtville Chamber of Commerce President’s Award for her dedication and contribution to the Chamber as director and financial officer.