Old Fashioned Festival court chosen
The royalty that will preside over the Newberg Old Fashioned Festival this year has been chosen.
Fauna Morrison, 16, Kianna Slayton, 16, and Emely Alejandro, 17, all Newberg High School students, make up this year's festival court.
To be named to the court, the trio first had to apply, then go through a panel interview before a four-person committee made its selection.
"We are selecting three young women to represent our town so we are looking for young women who take part in our community through volunteer work, athletics, etc.," court coordinator Krista Gardner said in an email. "They have to be friendly and open to meeting and talking to new people. We also look for compatibility between the applicants' personalities as we will be spending a lot of time together."
Slayton, daughter of Janet and Richie Slayton, is an NHS senior involved in tennis, church, Young Life and works at the softball fields in Newberg. She, and her parents, are Newberg natives.
"I wanted to be a member of the Old Fashioned Festival court because it seemed like an amazing opportunity to get more involved in my community and meet new people," she said. "I am all about making new friends and love good conversation and I felt like getting more involved in my town (and it) was an opportunity I couldn't pass up."
Upon graduation from NHS next spring, Slayton plans to attend a community college, then transfer to a four-year school to pursue a career in nursing.
She commented on what it means to be named to the court: "It means I get the privilege of representing the town I was born and raised in. It also means meeting so many new people and creating so many wonderful relationships along the way. It means finding ways to better our community and make Newberg the best town it can be. I think it's about having fun, interactions, getting out in the community, making an impact and investing in our town."
Alejandro, daughter of Roberto and Maria Alejandro, is a Newberg native who is a NHS senior involved in cheerleading and rugby.
"Growing up I remember watching the festival parade and watching the princesses go by and just being in total awe and wishing I was one of them," she said in an email. "They were one of my role models as a kid and I couldn't wait to grow up and get a chance to become one of them and give back to the community."
When she graduates from high school she plans to enter the Navy and later study to be an orthodontist.
"What it means to me to be named to the court? It honestly means the world. I'm getting the chance to live out my childhood dream while giving back to the community where I grew up in," she said. "The second I got the chance to become a NOFF court princess I took it. I get this incredible opportunity to represent not only the community but the entire city in such a positive way. I also get to be that role model for little kids and get to be one of the princesses who inspires the future princesses for the years to follow."
Morrison, the daughter of Kimberly and Philip Morrison, is an NHS senior who is involved in cheerleading as well as dance. She is a native of California, moved to Florida at the age of 2 and made Newberg her home when she was in fifth grade.
"I wanted to be a member of the Old Fashioned Festival Court because of the great opportunities, getting to be a part of something that brings the community closer together, and being a role model to all of the children, including future princesses," she said.
After she graduates, Morrison intends to attend college to study to be a physiologist.
"Being a part of the Old Fashioned Festival Court has meant so much to me. I have loved every second of it," she said. "My coordinators have made the girls and I feel so blessed to be a part of something so special. I'm so thankful I get to bring happiness to others with the volunteer work we get to do and all of the other fun activities we get to help out at."
The Old Fashioned Festival is July 26-29 at venues centered around Memorial Park. The queen will be chosen during a ceremony held July 26.