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ALMOND BLOSSOM HOPEFULS

Six queen candidates share their future plans

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ALMOND BLOSSOM HOPEFULS

Almond Blossom Queen candidates sit around a table at the Barnwood Restaurant for quizzing by Rotary Club members at their regular weekly meeting. Seen clockwise are Graelyn Pope, Lauren Van Till,...

GLENN KAHL/The Bulletin


POSTED February 8, 2013 12:31 a.m.

The six candidates reaching for the crown of the 51st Almond Blossom Queen told Rotarians of their individual plans for the future Wednesday and where they hoped to be in the next 10 years.

The candidates were guests of the Ripon Rotary Club at its noon luncheon at the Barnwood Restaurant.

All the girls are from Ripon High School except for one, Lauren Van Till, a senior at Ripon Christian High School.  They range in age from 16 to 17 and all insist they are having fun in their pursuit of the crown.

Morgan Scott was the first to take the podium, saying she was hoping to become a police dispatcher well before 10 years and would have perfected her skills in that time.  She added that she was wowed by the speeches and the focus of the crowd at the recent Spring Creek dinner held in their honor.

Anna Fassler paused for a moment and noted that in 10 years she would be 27 years old. By then, she hopes to be running her own old-fashioned ice cream parlor.  She was notified on Tuesday that she has been accepted to Dominican College where she plans to enter a five-year business program to get her master’s degree.

She added that her mom had been a queen candidate.  Fassler noted that she had always admired the girls she watched running for the crown and was inspired by all the fun they were having.  The one moment that made a mark with her was the signing of the contract with the Chamber of Commerce, agreeing to be a candidate with no turning back.

Michaela Ratto said she wants to be a successful entrepreneur and business woman.  Her dad has been suggesting that she think about buying an old milk truck and sell her famous cupcakes, she noted. 

Ratto said she had watched the queen candidates closely ever since she was in the seventh grade hoping to be in that role herself someday.

Graelyn Pope told the Rotarians that she has given thought to becoming an animal therapist using the calming influence of dogs to horses to make a difference with the psychological problems in the world. 

Past Rotary President John Mangelos interjected that horses have been known to be very calming to people in the past.

Pope said that she had been a candidate last year and had so much fun that she wanted to do it again, making new friends in the process.

And Van Till, a senior at Ripon Christian, plans to have her M.D. in 10 years with a degree in Endocrinology.  She hopes to be a physician’s assistant first to help pay her college tuition.

Alyssa Drennan said she has “big dreams” for the next 10 years.  She wants to go to cosmetology school and then to college, before starting her own salon.

“I have marched in the parade for the last six years watching the girls ahead of me playing the same song 20 times wanting to be in their place,” said Drennan, who was recently awed by the crowd that assembled to hear their speeches at Spring Creek Country.

The next level of judging will consist of essays written by the six candidates. The judge will not know the authors of the essays.

The last element to their judging comes from the ticket sales they have mounted between each other before the coronation at the end of February when Miss Almond Blossom will be crowned to represent the Ripon Chamber of Commerce for the remainder of the year.

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