Royalty carries burden of responsibility

If you think being the Emo Fair Queen is all about gifts, money, and a certain amount of fame, think again.
When Emo Fair Queen 2004 Trisha Wilson handed over the crown to her successor, Kayla Lauzon, she also was shedding a mantle of hard work and civic responsibility.
“It was a lot of fun, but it was a lot of hard work, too,” Wilson noted a few minutes after relinquishing her crown at the Emo-La Vallee Community Centre last Thursday night.
Wilson, 18, said the past year was one full of numerous chores and obligations—some of which she had anticipated and others she did not. It was a very full year.
“The jobs the committee gave me were very good because they kept me busy this summer,” she remarked.
And it’s not as though Wilson didn’t have other things to contend with. She was busy during her last year at Fort Frances High School working on various committees and projects, as well as making sure she had the marks needed to continue her post-secondary education.
Next month, she is off to Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, where she plans to take a degree in psychology with a view to going into a career in criminal personality studies.
Wilson acknowledged the past year took a certain amount of physical toll on her, but said it was well worth it.
“It was a lot of stress,” she admitted, noting she experienced headaches and muscle spasms from time to time, but the payoff already is apparent. Once somewhat shy, Wilson now finds herself much more comfortable dealing with people.
“Now I’m a lot less shy,” she remarked. “I can get up in front of people now and do whatever I have to do.”
At 15, Lauzon already is over the shyness. She is fairly well-known throughout the district as the owner of voice that has earned her considerable respect and admiration.
And she sees the upcoming year as more of the same.
“I guess I’ll be well-known around the district,” she remarked. “I’ll be doing a lot of parades.”
Lauzon, who was the Mini-Queen at the Emo Fair about 10 years ago, said she’s quite comfortable in front of crowds and is looking forward to the year ahead.
“I really like to be out there and have fun with people,” she enthused.
Lauzon said her agenda for the year ahead includes the Santa Claus parade, “Holly Daze,” and the Emo Walleye Classic.
She also will be responsible for organizing next year’s talent show for the Emo Fair queen candidates. That means she also likely will be required to fill in between acts, as Wilson did this year.
But Lauzon has other plans, too. “I’m thinking about putting together a talent show as a fundraiser for the handi-van,” she noted.
She will be aided in her duties over the next year by First Princess Sierra Woolsey of Emo and Second Princess Ashley Nordin of Stratton.
Lauzon will be in the spotlight in other areas in addition to her responsibilities as fair queen. She is active in sports at Fort High, particularly volleyball, and will be taking part in the musical revue this school year.
She was, however, somewhat surprised she won the fair queen title considering the level of competition for it.
“It was so tough,” she remarked. “Everyone did such a great job.”
Lauzon, who also received a cheque for $300 and a number of gift certificates along with her crown, took first place in the banner and interview categories, and second place in the fashion show, parade float, and entertainment, to post the highest overall score.
Ashley Richardson of Devlin, the fourth contestant in this year’s pageant, was voted Miss Congeniality and also was presented with the Dorothy Bonot Award.
So, what lies down the road for the newest fair queen? At 15, Lauzon is one of the youngest to wear the crown and the responsibility that comes with it, but she already is thinking ahead.
University is on the horizon as she prepares to enter Grade 10 at Fort High. “I want to go to Lakehead [University] to become a doctor,” she said.
Lauzon also has a back-up plan. Already known in the district as an accomplished singer, she is preparing to pursue that field if her first choice doesn’t pan out.
“If that [medicine] doesn’t work out, I want to be a famous singer,” she revealed.
Lauzon has been singing for years and even has a special karaoke machine on which she has stored more than 100 CDs.
In the meantime, however, the district’s newest royalty will have plenty to keep her busy over the next 12 months.