By Yolanda Nájera-Ewing
Two faithful young ladies have agreed to vie for the position of queen for the 35th annual Saint Francis Church Fiestas Patrias to be held Sept. 13 and 14.
Vying for Fiestas Patrias Queen are Alisha Garcia and Emma Sanchez. Both girls reside locally with their families and range in age from 10 years old to 11 years of age. The girls and their families have been busy consulting with Marcella Garcia who is the queen candidates chairperson and coordinator of their fund raising activities. These fund raising events will continue until the week before the annual fiesta. Both candidates and their families will be selling fiesta tickets which count as votes for the candidates.
Alisha Garcia is 10 years old and the daughter of Irene and Ramon Navarro. She is in the sixth grade at John F. Kennedy Elementary School. Her eldest brother, Anthony, is in the US Army and stationed at Fort Knox, Kentucky. Her brother, Marcus, is a Superior High senior. Brother Oniel is an eighth grader and brother Marques in is in the fourth grade. Alisha’s older sister Marina is a Superior High junior and younger sister Juliana is in fifth grade.
Queen Candidate Alisha enjoys working fractions and math is her favorite school subject. She started playing one of America’s favorite sports five years ago with tee ball, and she just finished a year of softball. She loves to watch movies with her mother. One of the movies Alisha likes the most is Frozen. She also likes getting pedicures and visiting with her friends. Pepperoni pizza is the food she likes the best. Alisha decided to run for fiesta queen because she wants to help her church and work with her parents and family to raise money for her church.
Emma Sanchez is 11 years old and the daughter of Sarah and Ricardo Sanchez. She is also in the sixth grade at JFK Elementary. She has a younger brother, Xavier, in the fourth grade; and a younger sister, Ava, who is in kindergarten. This fiesta queen candidate likes English and has fun writing school reports and stories. She has danced since age two and has been a winner of the talent contest in a previous fiesta. Emma is also a student at a dance studio in Mesa, Ariz. She also does tumbling and cheerleading, and hones these skills at a school in Queen Creek. Emma has been attending both dance and tumbling schools for a year. Her musical talents and abilities also include playing the flute. She has also played the flute for a year. Her favorite food is Chicken Alfredo. Emma wrote, “I want to be queen to help raise money for the church I attend with my family. I have wanted to be queen since I was five years old.”
Each of the Queen Candidates for the Fiestas Patrias will receive a formal gown, a crown, shoes and a sash. Marcella Garcia is director of the queen candidates and their projects. She can be reached at 480-550-1578 or at 480-939-1313. Other available contacts for the queen candidates are Fiestas Chair Steve Lopez , 689-5059, Fiestas Co-chair Olga Lopez , 520-827-4119, and the church office, 689-2250. Anyone wanting to make a donation to the queen candidates or to help in their fund raising is asked to call one of the numbers listed above.
“LIVE IN FAITH – VIVIR EN LA FE,” is the theme selected for this year’s Fiestas Patrias which will begin with a parade on Saturday, Sept. 13. Anyone wanting to have an entry in the parade can contact the church office. Food booths will open at 9 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday.