(1/23/13 – 1/27/13)
Our first night in St. Paul was a busy one. After checking in and settling into our rooms we were taken by “royal coach” buses downtown to the Moon Glow Parade. I actually thought we were just going to watch, but to my surprise all 91 of us ended up walking in it with the royal family through the streets of St. Paul waving our light-up wands. The parade ended in Rice Park where people had gathered to celebrate the start of Carnival. Even the bouncing team was there, and I somehow ended up getting tossed about twenty feet in the air (yikes). After we returned to the hotel we had craft time and painted ceramic tiles to take home, then socialized with our tablemates over pizza before meeting the 2012 Royal Family.
On our second day we got an early start to the day exploring the Rice Park area. We toured the Ordway Theatre, ran around Rice Park looking at the ice sculptures, and even got to see inside the palace that is the St. Paul Hotel. My absolute favorite was skating in the rink outside Landmark Center and, even though I am not a great skater, I somehow ended up teaching a fellow queen who had never skated before. After lunch at Old Country Buffet and bowling at an alley across from our hotel (which turned into a 91-queen dance party), we all dressed up for dinner and coronation at the River Center. I am not sure what I was more nervous for -- introducing myself onstage in front of a thousand people, or walking down the stairs off the front of the stage in my formal. Luckily, both were a success! It was great to see my Inver Grove Heights Royal Family again as well… best part of my night was running into them after dinner. They all looked so pretty in our new formals. After returning to the hotel late that night, a few of us gathered in the hallway to chat and trade buttons. Not sure how but this turned into seven of us going door to door “trick-or-treating” for buttons. It was so much fun!
Our final day started with the Vulcan coming-out event downtown at the Redbull Crashed Ice hill. We all had front row seats to watch as the Vulcans (or their stunt doubles) came flying down the ice before being introduced to the public. After this we all loaded back onto our buses and headed to the fairgrounds to see all the snow sculptures. I had fun getting lost in the snow maze with Miss West St. Paul. We then stopped at McDonalds and we were surprised when our lunch was interrupted by none other than the new 2013 Vulcan Crew! They are really nice guys … and even said “thank you” as they ran off with some of my fries. We then went to line up to walk in the Grande Day Parade. Seeing people’s surprised reaction as 91 waving queens passed by made me smile. Back at the hotel we had time to relax before dressing up to meet the 2013 Royal Family. That evening after dinner we had a short variety show where queens sang, danced, and did short skits. My group did a short improv comedy show, calling ourselves the “Queens of Comedy.” Our show ended just in time for the arrival of the royal family. Our second big surprise of the day was King Boreas calling us forward and having all 91 queens gather around the pillow to be knighted into the realm of Boreas Rex the 77th.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. After this weekend I now have over two hundred pictures on my brand new camera, which means I honestly had a hard time putting this past weekend into words. I had so much fun at Queens Weekend with my fellow 91 queens, and now have many new friends and memories! According to the director we were the largest group of visiting queens to ever attend this event, and I was so excited to be a part of it. Thank you to everyone!
- Kassi Giles
Miss Inver Grove Heights 2013