Community Interest

Maggie McDonough Named 2021 Festival Queen

By Kathy Miller

Three outstanding young ladies participated in the New Melle Festival Queen Pageant program this year.  Maggie McDonough of Defiance, Daileigh Pinkston of Wentzville and Jordan Ropp of Wentzville.

Maggie McDonough was crowned the 2021 New Melle Festival Queen on Friday, June 11 at the coronation ceremony. Maggie will receive a $750 college scholarship. Daileigh Pinkston was awarded the title of Miss Congeniality.  All three candidates deserve a huge round of applause and congratulations for all of their accomplishments and hard work!

Maggie McDonough is the daughter of Craig and Rebecca McDonough of Defiance and attends Francis Howell High School. After graduating next year, Maggie plans to attend Missouri State University and pursue a Business and Administration Degree. Maggie is sponsored by Maracas Mexican Family Restaurant.

Daileigh Pinkston is the daughter of Tim and Beth Pinkston of Wentzville and is a senior at Timberland High School. She is undecided on what college to attend, but plans to pursue a degree in education and wants to be a first-grade teacher. Daileigh is sponsored by The Red Beauty Salon.

Jordan Ropp is the daughter of Rich and Melissa Ropp of Wentzville. Jordan is a senior at Francis Howell High School and plans on pursuing a PhD at Missouri S&T. Her career dream is to be an aerospace engineer at Elon Musk’s Space X. Jordan is sponsored by Catala Facial Retreat and Boutique.

The 2020 retiring queen Sammy Brague, the daughter of Dan and Michelle Brague. Sammy will enter the Direct Nursing Program at Maryville University in August. She aims to achieve her Bachelor's Degree in Nursing Science and work in the Pediatric Respiratory ICU. Sammy enjoyed meeting new people and helping the New Melle community through all the events she had participated in during her reign as the queen. Sammy wishes the 2021 New Melle Festival Queen, Maggie McDonough, the best of luck in her upcoming reign.

The pageant program was officially underway as the group of candidates and judges met in late March to kick things off at The Quarry Wine Garden for a formal dinner. Early events also included the New Melle Chamber of Commerce Easter Egg Hunt and a craft night where the candidates created arm-knitted blankets. This spring, the candidates were busy planning and hosting the seventh annual "Kickin' It For Cancer" kickball tournament at NMSR. They raised $5,000 for Friends of Kids with Cancer, which was donated in the loving memory of Trevor Joerling. In June, they sponsored the annual Car Wash and Bake Sale at the New Melle Fire Department.  During Family Night at the Festival, they hosted the second annual Little Miss and Mister Pageant, where Emma Cenatiempo was crowned the 2021 New Melle Festival Little Miss Contestant. All three candidates demonstrated hardworking, positive and energetic personalities as they interacted throughout the community.

This was the 68th consecutive New Melle Festival Queen Pageant. The long-standing community tradition provides a scholarship opportunity for young women who live in the New Melle Fire Protection District. Candidates are selected based on a compilation of points acquired from community service and involvement, ticket sales, poise, personality, responsibility and interview questions that took place prior to the pageant.

The candidates, along with the pageant coordinator Jenna Paul, would like to sincerely thank the following individuals and businesses: pageant judges Alicia Feldmann and Amanda Motz of Cappeln. Thank you for all of the time you have donated in the months leading up to the event. Another big thank you to the pageant's emcee this year, Donnie McCloud, the creator of the New Melle 411 Facebook page. He did a great job!  A final thank you to the 2021 candidate and event sponsors: Catala Facial Retreat & Boutique, The Red Beauty Salon and Maracas Mexican Family Restaurant; Dr. Paul Moore D.D.S. - New Melle Dental for sponsoring the pageant shirts; People Savings Bank for ticket printing; Creative Stitches for sash design and printing; Audrey Lee Photography for candidate photos, the New Melle Fire Department; Jordan Ropp for singing the National Anthem, New Melle Sports and Rec for all they have done and the community at large for all of their support.

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Maggie McDonough the 2021 New Melle Festival Queen with her dad, Craig.

Daileigh Pinkston with her dad, Tim.

Jordan Ropp with her dad, Rich.

Maggie McDonough with her dad, Craig.

The 2021 New Melle Festival Queen Pageant emcee,
Donnie McCloud, creator of the New Melle 411 Facebook page.

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L-R (front): Emma Cenatiempo (Little Miss 2021), Maggie McDonough (2021 New Melle Queen),  Nathan Rigano (2020 Little Mister),
L-R (back): Sammy Brague (2020 retiring New Melle Festival Queen), Daileigh Pinkston (2021 Miss Congeniality)
and Jordan Ropp (2021 New Melle Festival Queen contestant.) Jordan also sang the National Anthem to open the pageant.