RIVER FALLS, Wis. -- While the traditional River Falls Days celebration was canceled this year due to concerns over the coronavirus, a staple of the annual celebration still took place, albeit in a modified version, as the 2020 River Falls Royalty was crowned during the Royal Ambassador “Quoranation” Thursday night, July 9 at First National Bank of River Falls Field.
At the end of the night, high school junior Emily Odegard was crowned 2020 Grand Royal Ambassador with senior Dennis Grisar named First Royal Ambassador and juniors Abby Madsen and Maddy Simon rounding out the court as Royal Ambassadors. Senior Eloise Olson was Most Congenial.
The other royalty candidates included junior Gwen Adams, junior Jozylin O’Brien, junior Laura Pacheco and junior Abby Wagner.
Passing the torch, or crowns, to the new royalty was the 2019 court of Grand Royal Ambassador Grace Simon, First Royal Ambassador Rachael Rahn, Royal Ambassador Rachel Nowak and Royal Ambassador Olivia John.
It’s been a challenging last few months for both the reigning royalty and the nine 2020 royalty candidates with virtual gatherings instead of in-person meetings, coronations altered to include videos and online streaming and the focus shifting from large parades and festivals to socially distanced volunteer efforts.
Thursday night’s event was moved from the high school to First National Bank of River Falls Field and included pre-recorded personal presentations by each candidate as well as live performances by both the outgoing and incoming royalty ending with the crowing of the 2020 court. The event was also broadcast live on the River Falls Sports YouTube channel.