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ani, glitter

Graduation Year -- and My Friend Queen Jen

I'm a native Portlander, so I've been around the Rose Festival my whole life. I love every aspect of the Festival from the Battle of the Bands [Festival of Bands], the Fleet arrival and the Grand Floral Parade to the Queen's Coronation.

I was a senior in high school back in 1991 (attending Wilson High School) when my really good friend Jennifer Deas was crowned Queen of Rosaria! I attended the Coronation Ceremony at Lloyd Center, which was held actually on the covered up ice rink that year. After the ceremony, I was able to go back stage and give Queen Jennifer a huge hug of congratulations.

Our high school was scheduled for graduation at the Civic Auditorium the night before the Grand Floral Parade -- so that meant that our 'All Night Party' was the night and morning of the Grand Floral Parade. I remember Queen Jennifer attended the graduation ceremony and was then whisked off to the Battle of the Bands at the Civic Stadium. Later she was brought back for the 'All Night Party.'

After the 'All Night Party,' five of us decided that we weren't tired, so we went straight from were the school buses dropped us off back at Wilson and headed to downtown Portland -- near SW Taylor and 13th -- to park. We toted our signs that read "Wilson Loves You Queen Jen" and our lawn chairs down to SW Broadway (in front of the Central library) and camped out at something like 6:00 a.m. -- just to see our best friend Queen Jen!

This was one of my most memorable experiences with all of the Portland Rose Festival events I have attended over the years.

Thanks for letting me share my story!

~Carolyn (Lake Oswego, Oregon)