Five young women selected
By Holly Neumann
Iola-Scandinavia seniors Payton Wester, Emily Wolfgram, Makenna Brown, Sophie Gullixon and Haley Ullom are members of the 2019 Winter Carnival Court.
One will be chosen as the Queen of Snows.
“It is an honor to be chosen for the Winter Carnival Court,” said Makenna. “It is a way for me to give back to my community. I am excited to be part of such a good tradition.”
She said her desire to help others with open arms and a kind heart would be her biggest asset as queen of snows.
“Helping others is something I have a passion for because I feel that is what defines a person,” Brown said. “Going out of your way to help others because you want to rather than because you have to builds character. At the end of the day I would just like to help as many people as I can.”
If chosen as Queen of Snows, Brown wants to ensure that the Winter Carnival tradition is enjoyed by all ages and that everyone is included.
Upon graduation from Iola-Scandinavia she plans to attend Bethel University in St. Paul, with a major in biokinetics.
Makenna is the daughter of Vicki and Steve Brown.
Wester is grateful to be part of Winter Carnival tradition, meet new people and to participate in a few events for the first time.
“I have a lot of community pride and am excited to partake in all of the activities that go along with this wonderful community event,” said Wester. “It is an honor be to a part of the Winter Carnival Court.”
She feels that her greatest asset as the queen of snows is her willingness to give back to the community.
“I enjoy doing everything I can for the people around me,” Payton said. “I will be able to help out whenever needed and go the extra mile to make this event a success. This would be a small way of saying thank you to the community for all the support they have provided to me.”
If chosen as queen of snows, she will make sure that this tradition is enjoyed by everyone.
“While helping out with various aspects of the Winter Carnival, I will engage in conversations with volunteers, participants, and guests to our community with a focus on listening to each person’s stories, memories, and connections to the Winter Carnival,” she said.
Payton is the daughter of Mark and Stacey Wester, of Iola.
Upon graduation from Iola-Scandinavia she plans on attending college to pursue a degree in communicative sciences and disorders, in hopes of becoming a speech and language pathologist.
“To me being a Winter Carnival princess means I am representing the town of Iola,” said Gullixon. “It means a lot to me to be part of such a huge event in our community because so many people look forward to this every year.”
Gullixon has live in Iola her whole life.
“When I was younger I wanted to become a Winter Carnival princess because I looked up to them,” she said. “The Winter Carnival is such a great tradition because it brings the whole community together and also reminds us of where we came from and how we ended up in Iola.”
She believes her personality is her greatest asset for the title of queen of snows.
“If I was chosen as queen of snows I would make sure the community is involved by spreading information about the Winter Carnival to people of all ages,” she said. “This will ensure participation and will bring the town of Iola closer together.”
Gullixon plans on attending UW- Stevens Point with a major in Elementary Education, upon her graduation from Iola-Scandinavia in 2019.
She is the daughter of Rod and Rachel Gullixon.
“Being a part of the court is an important role that I am glad to fulfill,” said Ullom. “I am grateful to be more involved with the community. I am honored to represent my hometown and the warm-hearted community.”
She feels that the Winter Carnival preserves Norwegian heritage of the community.
“It allows elders to pass down traditions to younger generations,” Ullom said. “And gives many opportunities to have fun and try new things in the middle of winter.”
As queen of the snows, she hopes to inspire the younger generation to carry on lasting traditions.
“I would also want to make sure that everyone in the community and surrounding areas enjoy this outstanding weekend of winter activities and Norwegian traditions,” she said. “If chosen as queen of snows, I will share my lifetime of experiences of the traditions with anyone with the time and interest.”
Ullom plans to enlist in the United States Air Force following graduation.
She is the daughter of Gordon and Cari Ullom.
“It means so much to me to be a part of Winter Carnival,” Wolfgram said. “I have always looked up to these girls and I am truly humbled to be a part of it.”
Wolfgram sees her involvement in the community and volunteering as her biggest assets as queen of snows.
“I would bring a love of community, a strong leadership role and a positive attitude,” she said. “I want to be able to spread the love that is generated in Winter Carnival to the community, and being queen of snows would allow me to do so. I am very humbled to even be considered.”
In school she is involved in volleyball, softball, National Honors Society, Student Council, and DECA.
“I’m also apart of Great Minds Great Books, DECA Leadership Council, and am the secretary for Iola’s chapters of National Honor Society, DECA and Student Council,” she said.
Wolfgram plans pursuing a degree in Marketing and Business Administration in the fall of 2019.
She is the daughter of Tom and Mary Wolfgram of Iola.
The Queen of Snows will be crowned at 3 p.m. on Feb. 2, 2019, during the Norwegian Lutefisk Supper at the Iola-Scandinavia High School.