It was an exciting evening Friday at the Northfield Middle School when the Defeat of Jesse James Days selected 5 new 2018 Junior Ambassadors to reign over the upcoming celebration and promote Northfield over the next year. 19 candidates participated to an auditorium full of family, friends and dignitaries from over 25 different communities throughout the state, known as the Sparkle Section.

The 3 new ambassadors are Jordan Andreas, Hannah Malecha, & Emma Peterson. The 2 new Junior Ambassadors are Maia Graupmaann and Maren Simonson.

The selection panel which was made up of three out of town individuals look for communication skills, poise, personality and most importantly a team of five that will work together over the next year. They conducted formal interviews, social judging and a luncheon last weekend with all the candidates.

During the prior 6 weeks all the candidates participated in a number of activities including volunteering at Millstream Commons, Three Links Golf Tournament, DJJD Hog Roast, distributing brochures to downtown businesses, Laura Baker Services Assn Family Fun Day and a pancake breakfast fundraiser. They also enjoyed a bowling day with the current ambassadors, had etiquette training, mock interview sessions, as well as several rehearsals for coronation.

At the coronation Friday night, a special tribute was made for Northfield making history at Minneapolis Aquatennial this year by having back to back Queen of the Lakes with Carolyn Meyer in 2017 and just a few weeks ago Vanessa Gonzalez was crowned 2018 Queen. The entire contingency of Minneapolis Aquatennial including Chairman Jim Erickson spoke of what a great community Northfield is and gave special recognition to all the parents.

The outgoing 2017 DJJD Ambassadors made up of Ashley Marek, Olivia Keske ,Emily Transburg & Jr Ambassadors Zac King and Daijah Freeman all gave heartfelt speeches about how this past year has made them much more stronger and confident young people. St Paul Winter Carnival knight each of them into the “Realm of Boreas” . Ashley, Olivia, & Emily were each presented with a $2,000 scholarship from Deb Anthony, DJJD General Chair. The Juniors were given gift cards in appreciation of their year.

It was also announced by Aquatennial Queen of the Lakes Vanessa Gonzalez that 2017 DJJD Ambassador Olivia Keske will represent Northfield at next year’s Minneapolis Aquatennial week.
Along with reigning over the upcoming DJJD Celebration, the ambassadors will make over 80 appearances around the state promoting Northfield and volunteering and growing into leadership roles.