Ripon Almond Blossom Queen candidate Nalani Alhambra, 17, has plans to attend the University of the Pacific to study for a career in dental hygiene.
She is one of seven hopefuls seeking the title for the festival Feb. 26-28 and to then serve the rest of the year as Miss Ripon.
“Practical, positive and headstrong” are three words she said that best describe her personality.
Nalani was awestruck in 2013 as she watched her sister Erika run for the Miss Ripon crown and becoming involved in the community, making new friends within the queen’s court and in the community during the competition. It was then that she set her sights on competing to become the Almond Blossom Queen three years later. Her sister was first runner-up that year.
Nalani is involved in the Ripon High Choir program as well as the newly established Acapella Club. She has served as a volunteer for the annual Color the Skies hot air balloon festival working in a variety of positions since 2012.
She was recently honored at an Ripon Unified school board meeting for attaining a perfect score on the English portion of the Smarter Balance test. In her free time Nalani said she enjoys singing, reading and drawing.
“I also enjoy baking, playing the piano and volunteering around town,” she said.
Nalani has lived in Ripon for the past 10 years. She has come to “love and enjoy the simple beauty” and everything the community has to offer. She added that Ripon is “such a wonderful and safe place to live.”
Another reason she appreciates the chance to run for Almond Blossom Queen is that she has realized the opportunity to take away a new found level of self-confidence as well as new communication and leadership skills that she may use throughout her lifetime. She added that she has always been confident in herself but never so bold as to put herself out there in the community. She is now looking forward to meeting the leaders of Ripon and its citizens during her quest.
“For me being Miss Ripon is not just about the crown and sash, but more about having the ability to make a difference in this wonderful city we call home.”
To contact Glenn Kahl email email@example.com.