Meet the Pioneer Days Queen, Jr. Queen contestants

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Alena Martinez, Stephanie Lomeli, Emily Bickley, Rhiannon Pacheco, Allison Gillaspy are competing this year for Pioneer Day Queen and Jr. Queen. (Angela Hillan-Ramirez photo)

The 2013 Pioneer Days Queen contestants have been hard at work for several weeks earning points to see who will earn the crowns.

Along with selling raffle tickets, the girls competed in a fashion show and speech contest.

Vying for Pioneer Day Queen are Emily Bickley and Stephanie Lomeli. Junior contestants are Allison Gillaspy, Alena Martinez and Rhiannon Pacheco.

Emily, 18, is the daughter of Bridget and Rick Bickley of Kearny and is a senior at Ray High School. She is an honor roll student, was named Elks Student of the Month, played volleyball and is currently on the track team.

She likes to be outdoors with her family and friends and enjoys sports and hunting.

She plans to attend Rio Salado College after high school to study for a career as a dental assistant.

She wanted to run for Pioneer Day Queen because she wanted to reach out to our small community.

Stephanie is 15 and is the daughter of Ruth Lomeli and Christopher Alvarado of Kearny. She is a sophomore at Ray High School where she is a honor roll student and cheerleader and also plays in the Bearcat band.

She is active in the community helping people and doing volunteer work. She is an altar server at Infant Jesus of Prague Catholic Church and plays the flute in special programs at the church. She also has helped coach soccer.

In her spare time Stephanie likes to listen to music, sing and dance and loves to play games and watch movies with her family.

After high school she plans to attend CAC with hopes to transfer to the University of Arizona to further her studies in science.

She said she decided to run for Queen because she ran for Junior Queen two years ago and had a great experience. “It helped me overcome my fear of large crowds and I met a number of people in the community plus I had fun and hope to have the same experience this year,” she added.

Allison is 14 and is in the eighth grade at Ray Elementary. She is the daughter of Kimberly Gillaspy and Samuel Gillaspy, both of Kearny.

She is an honor roll student and is a representative for her class on the student council. She is also active in cheer, band, volleyball and softball.

She has helped out her community by helping cook a Christmas dinner for a family who was struggling.

Her interests include playing volleyball and softball and she loves to hang out with friends and go shooting with her family, camping, and riding four wheelers.

In the future Allison would like to attend BYU, Idaho, but hasn’t decided what her course of study will be.

She said she wanted to run for Junior Queen because she thought it would be a fun experience. She added that it would get her more involved in the community and would also improve her communication skills.

Alena is in the seventh grade at Ray Elementary and is 13 years old. She lives in Kearny and is the daughter of Crystal Lechuga Granillo and Allen Martinez.

Her activities include playing in the Jr. High Band, volleyball, softball and soccer. She has also been active in 4-H, but took this year off.

Her hobbies include practicing baton twirling, softball, hanging out with her friends and listening to music.

She would like to attend ASU after she finishes high school.

Alena said she wanted to run for Jr. Queen for the fun experience and to have a good time with her friends.

Rhiannon, 13, is an eighth grader at Ray Elementary and is the daughter of Donald Pacheco of Kearny.

Her school activities include playing softball, basketball and volleyball and she has been participating in cheer since she was very young. She is an honor roll student and is currently trying out for yearbook.

She has helped volunteer with her dad at the Kearny Elks Lodge and at the Kearny Fellowship Baptist Church. She also helps both her grandmothers do things around the house, if needed.

Her interests include playing softball, reading her AR book and doing cheer stunts with her friends. She also likes to do other girls’ hair and nails and is learning to cook with her brother and dad.

In the future Rhiannon wants to attend Arizona State University and would like to become a doctor. She also would like to have a nice house in a big city, a nice family with great kids and would like to live life to the fullest.

She wanted to run for Junior Queen because she has seen some older girls do it and they talked about how much fun they had. “I decided when I got the chance I should try and run too. It doesn’t really matter if you win or lose, just as long as you enjoyed doing it. I knew it would take some work and maybe time from other things, but in the end I’m sure I can say it was worth it.,” she said.

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