Marcia Rowe, Gleaner Writer
They were already winners when they arrived at the Ranny Williams Entertainment Centre on Saturday night where 13 parish queens displayed poise, exciting performances, and cultural knowledge.
And when the final marks were tallied, Krystal Tomlinson, representing the parish of Manchester, walked into the annals of history as the queen, along with sectional prizes of Most Culturally Aware, Most Active in Community, and Most Poised.
Her first runner-up was Nordia Marie Antwine, Miss St Mary, who had produced a well-delivered, profound and relevant dub poem titled 'Wage Freeze'. Second runner-up went to Evonie Blake, Miss St Elizabeth.
"Winning the Festival Queen Competition is an important milestone in my life because it helps me to transition from being an observer of Jamaica culture and a participant of the culture to becoming an ambassador for it. And I am relishing the opportunity," said Tomlinson.
The sectional prize list was completed with a tie. Jannel Alexander, Miss Portland; and Nekeisha Bernard, Miss Westmoreland, were considered the Most Congenial by their peers.
Whitney Givans, Miss St Catherine, and Neika Sasha-Gay Lewis, Miss Trelawny, rounded out the top five.
Harold Davis and Friends, along with Gem Myers, were guest performers, while Dahlia Harris and Heather Grant were the emcees.