Big Crowds Enjoy Annual St. Francis Picnic

Thursday, July 24, 2014
Ashleigh Bedwell (center), the 15-year-old daughter of Treg and Dena Bedwell of Campbell, was crowned Miss St. Francis Saturday night. First alternate is Madison Cate (second from right), the 18-year-old daughter of Cam and Sherry Cate of Rector. Second alternate is Sadie Sawyers (second from left), the 16-year-old daughter of Chuck and Rachel Sawyers of Piggott. Third alternate is Colby Lynch (far right), the 16-year-old daughter of Bryan and Angel Lynch of Rector. Fourth alternate is Abbie Welborn (far left), the 14-year-old daughter of Rob and Angie Welborn of Piggott.

A beautiful, mild summer day greeted visitors to the annual St. Francis Picnic Saturday, as cooler-than-typical July weather served to bring large crowds out for a day of fun at the annual event. Hundreds turned out at the community's picnic grounds for the celebration, supporting the continued upkeep and maintenance of the Hall and Gravel Hill Cemeteries.

The day provided a number of events for those in attendance, including the traditional pageants, popular benefit auction, delicious food, games and live entertainment from Patrick Patterson and The Band of Piggott, Kristen Scott of Piggott and Marcus White of Nashville.

The picnic concluded with the crowning of Ashleigh Bedwell, the 15-year-old daughter of Treg and Dena Bedwell of Campbell, as Miss St. Francis 2014. First alternate is Madison Cate, the 18-year-old daughter of Cam and Sherry Cate of Rector. Second alternate is Sadie Sawyers, the 16-year-old daughter of Chuck and Rachel Sawyers of Piggott. Third alternate is Colby Lynch, the 16-year-old daughter of Bryan and Angel Lynch of Rector. Fourth alternate is Abbie Welborn, the 14-year-old daughter of Rob and Angie Welborn of Piggott.

Several young contestants were crowned during the day's earlier pageants.

Adele Wood, the 11-month-old daughter of Wesley and Chelsea Wood of Piggott, was crowned Baby Miss St. Francis. First alternate is Makayla Crowder, the nine-month-old daughter of Michalle and Charles Crowder of Fagus. Ariona Wyman, the six-week-old daughter of Gayla Romine and Mike Wyman of Campbell, is second alternate. Third alternate is Sophia Garcia, the nine-month-old daughter of Michelle and Dominic Garcia of Corning.

Caleb Branson, the 10-month-old son of Adam and Rachel Branson of Rector, was crowned Baby Mr. St. Francis during Saturday's festivities. First alternate is Jase Welch, the nine-month-old son of Justin and Lauren Welch of Piggott.

Allie Mendoza, the 23-month-old daughter of Jesus and Stephanie Mendoza of St. Francis, was crowned Tiny Miss St. Francis on Saturday. First alternate is Swayze Stone, the 16-month-old daughter of Kyle and April Stone of Kennett. Rylee Anderson, the 13-month-old daughter of Derek and Lindsay Anderson of Malden, is second alternate.

Leighton Parson, the 16-month-old son of Emily and Aaron Parson of Piggott, was crowned Tiny Mr. St. Francis Saturday. First alternate is Zaiden Moore, the 14-month-old son of Tori Moore and Josh Moore of St. Francis.

Kloie Seal, the three-year-old daughter of Billy Joe and Priscilla Seal of Piggott, was crowned Toddler Miss St. Francis on Saturday. First alternate is Marlee White, the three-year-old daughter of LeeAnn and Marcus White of Nashville. Talan Toombs, the four-year-old daughter of Jeremy Toombs and Greg and Michelle Bradshaw of Piggott, is second alternate.

Chloie Foster, the five-year-old daughter of Michelle Foster of St. Francis, was crowned Little Miss St. Francis. First alternate is Halen Kenna Miller, the five-year-old daughter of Dustin and Heather Miller of Paragould. Second alternate is Brileigh Daniels, the five-year-old daughter of Emily and Aaron Parson of Piggott. Third alternate is Reese Carr, the six-year-old daughter of Jason and Kendra Carr of Campbell. Fourth alternate is Olivia Rebstock, the five-year-old daughter of Tiffany and Matt Rebstock of Holcomb.

Jacy Featherston, the 11-year-old daughter of Sara Wellman and Jeremy Featherston of Piggott, was crowned Junior Miss St. Francis. First alternate is Emma Welborn, the 12-year-old daughter of Rob and Angie Welborn of Piggott. Second alternate is Sophie Simmons, the 11-year-old daughter of Stephen and Jamie Simmons of Rector. Third alternate is Hailee Burnett, the 10-year-old daughter of Micca and John Burnett of Campbell. Fourth alternate is Madison Reeves, the 11-year-old daughter of Kevin and Samantha Reeves of Piggott.

"The weather was gorgeous and we had a great day," devoted volunteer Janet Luff-Kilbreath said of the event.

Indeed, the favorable conditions brought visitors in droves, with the popular fried chicken meal at the picnic's kitchen selling all of its delicious meals to hungry picnic-goers.

The strength of small community picnics such as this comes from the many dedicated volunteers and sponsors who work hard to make such an event possible. The organizers wish to thank all of the volunteers, sponsors and participants for making the 2014 St. Francis Picnic another memorable outing, and for the support shown to the Hall and Gravel Hill Cemeteries.

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