One to be named Queen of Snows
The 2018 Iola Winter Carnival court has been selected.
The four court members include Jessa Boris, Quinn Hoyord, Cocheta Packard and Mia Wandtke.
One of them will be named the Queen of Snows.
“Being on the winter carnival court helps me connect with my strong Norwegian heritage,” Wandtke said. “My maternal great grandfather’s lineage has been traced back to the Viking times. My family continues to keep the Norwegian traditions alive. My mother taught me how to make lefse and showed me how to rosemal.”
A senior at Iola-Scandinavia High School, Wandtke is a busy student.
“I take part in multiple sports including rugby, soccer and rodeo,” she said. “I am a member of Student Council, National Honor Society, a football statistician and Leo’s Club.”
Outside of school, she is a part of the Rodeo City Riders and Tri-City Riding Club, where she has won many awards with horses.
Wandtke is also a member of the Army National Guard.
She feels her leadership skills would make her a good Winter Carnival queen.
“As captain of the rugby and soccer teams, student council president, class secretary and 1st squad leader in 2nd Platoon from Alpha Company 3-10 Infantry, I have proven leadership qualities,” she said. “Along with leadership, I am an outgoing person and comfortable talking to people of all ages. With the qualities I demonstrate, as well as a strong Norwegian heritage, I believe the title as Queen of Snows would be very fitting.”
Upon graduation, Wandtke will be headed to Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, to complete advanced individual training.
“I will graduate in early August as a motor transportation specialist,” she said. “I will be continuing my education at the University of Wisconsin River-Falls where I have been accepted to study animal science.”
Mia is the daughter of Tim and Jen Wandtke.
For Hoyord, being on the Winter Carnival Court is a family tradition.
“My grandmother and my mother were both Queen of the Snows,” she said. “The Norwegian blood that runs through my veins has shaped me and it is an honor to be a part of this event which celebrates my family’s culture.”
The high school senior is an involved student who is the National Honor Society president and vice president of Student Council. She is also involved in volleyball, softball, school musical, football statistician, Leo’s Club, Student Council, National Honor Society, Band and Spanish Club.
“Leading by example is what I do best,” she said. “I always put myself last in any situation.”
Hoyord believes that her honesty and integrity make her a great choice for Queen of Snows.
“When I think of a queen, I think of someone whom people like to follow and look up to,” she said. “I am a leader in my school and community, setting a good example so others may do the same. I put 110 percent in everything I do, nothing is taken lightly.”
She believes that the Iola Winter Carnival is an important part of the community.
“This event shows how generous and hard-working our community is,” Hoyord said. “People giving up their time to do their part is just inspiring. And, with no complain, because they love what they are working for. As an active member in the community, it still amazes me the gratitude that we receive and the support.”
She is the daughter of Charlie and Heather Hoyord and plans on going to college to pursue a degree in nursing.
Packard is honored to be a Winter Carnival princess.
“Being on the Winter Carnival court gives me an opportunity to become more involved in the community and to be a part of the town’s heritage,” she said. “I also want set a good example for young T-Birds and our school to get involved the community because it can often be rewarding.”
She feels that this event helps teach younger generations about the community.
“The Winter Carnival is a celebration of heritage and history,” she said. “That is important no matter where you are. It brings our community and surrounding area together. There are not many things that brings communities together anymore. We should be proud and cherish events that bring people together.”
Being a good role model make Packard a good candidate for Queen of Snows.
“I am me,” she said. “I don’t try to be someone I am not and I stay true to myself. Being you and not changing who you are for others is very important. The media can make you feel like you have to be this way or that. Children and young adults need to know to be themselves and not someone else they are not.”
Packard is an aspiring artist, photographer and graphic designer.
“I enjoy taking pictures of nature and painting and am involved in student council and art crew,” she said. “I plan to go to college to get a bachelor’s in fine arts with an emphasis in graphic design in the fall of 2018.”
She is the daughter of William Packard.
“Being on court to me means that I get to celebrate the winter season and help others realize that winter carnival is a fun experience and that it brings people closer together,” Boris said.
Having volunteered for the past three years for parking cars with the Boy Scouts for the lutefisk supper and carving the ice sculptures, she feels that the Winter Carnival is an important part of the community.
“It brings us all together as a community and has a wide variety of people come for different things, letting us all bond,” she said. “It means to me that we can all celebrate not only the winter season but each other.”
In school Boris is involved in the school musicals, forensics, Art Crew and Student Council.
Upon graduation in 2018 she plans on attending UW-Green Bay.
“I am a singer, actress and makeup artist,” she said. “I will have a double major in Nursing and Musical Theater.”
What makes Boris a good candidate for Queen of Snows?
“I feel that I would be a good queen because I have been raised to be accepting of others, understand people’s’ differences and overall be a nice person,” she said. “I think that will be portrayed at the interview and that I will be seen as who I really am.”
She is the daughter of Jason and Teresa Boris.
The 57th annual Iola Winter Carnival is set for Feb. 2-4, in Iola.
The event includes a lutefisk supper, craft sale, ice sculpting, ski jumping, snowshoe race, fat bike race and skijoring. For more information, visit iolawintercarnival.com.
The Queen of Snows will be announced in January.