Junior Orange Bowl royalty hard at work as festival unfolds
The 2012-13 Junior Orange Bowl Royal Court has been working hard to serve the South Florida community since being crowned in November.
The first event on the new Royal Court’s calendar was volunteering Nov. 29-Dec. 1 at the annual Junior Orange Bowl Sports Ability Games, a three-day series of athletic events for physically challenged youths. The Royal Court also participated in the annual tree-lighting ceremony and holiday spectacular in downtown Coral Gables on Dec. 7.
Each year the Royal Court appears at various award ceremonies and serves as goodwill ambassadors to all the youths participating in the 2012-13 Junior Orange Bowl festival of events.
The Royal Court’s duties culminate at the annual Junior Orange Bowl Parade, where the winners will ride on a float through the streets of downtown Coral Gables on Sunday, Dec. 30.
This year’s Royal Court final took place at the Rebeca Sosa Theater in Miami Springs. The queen and two princesses were chosen from over 20 finalists, who were judged on a variety of aspects such as personality, academics, community service and poise.
Aria Armstead, an eighth-grader at Lexington Middle School, was crowned as this year’s queen. Sophia Pereira, a student at Leewood Middle School, and Maya Elias, a student at Terra Environmental Research Institute, were crowned as the princesses.
Also honored were Ashley Rey, as alternate princess; Skyler Odin, Miss Congeniality; and Camilia Romero, Miss New Adventures.
“We are very proud and honored to have this year’s Royal Court represent the Junior Orange Bowl and all of its youth participants,” said Royal Court chair Isa Goenaga. “Each of the selected girls exemplifies all of the qualities on which this contest was founded. They each are very good students and have a passion for community service that matches the mission of the Junior Orange Bowl.”
The 64th Junior Orange Bowl Parade Theme is “Sailing to New Adventures,” which commemorates the 500th anniversary of Ponce de Leon’s arrival Florida.
Led this year by grand marshal Ron Magill of Zoo Miami, the parade begins at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 30, by heading south on Ponce De Leon Boulevard starting at Alhambra Circle. The parade will turn west on Miracle Mile and finish in front of the grandstand seating area on Biltmore Way, right in front of Coral Gables City Hall.
Attendance is free; a limited number of grandstand tickets can be purchased in advance for those preferring premium seats. For more information, call 305-662-1210 or visit www.jrorangebowl.org.