DOUGLAS — Five China Poblana’s were selected Aug. 30 at a China Poblana selection event held at the American Legion.
Twelve contestants competed in five age divisions.
Kassandra Espadas was crowned the overall Miss China Poblana. Jael Monzarrat Moreno was the first runner-up and Angelica Jimenez was the second runner-up.
Espadas, 18, a senior at Douglas High School, says she is excited to be able to represent Douglas as its China Poblana.
“I like representing my community,” she said. “I see this as a great opportunity.”
Espadas had been Miss Douglas Days Teen in 2018.
“I decided to run because of not only the dresses and the look, but also the history,” she said. “I can’t wait to get out and represent my community as its China Poblana.”
In the Toddler China division, which is for children ages 2-4, there were three contestants. Milani Durazo was named the 2021-22 Toddler China. First runner-up was Natalie Nieblas; second runner-up was Erizel Garcia.
In the Little China Poblana division for girls ages 5-8, there were four contestants. Janeth Rubi Chavez was selected to be the Little China Poblana. Alondra Camacho was the first runner-up; Amaya Rodriguez, second runner-up; and Alessandra Mejia was the third runner-up.
Nevaeh Montano ran unopposed and was crowned the Junior China Poblana for girls 9-12
Daniela Bernal ran unopposed and was crowned the Teen China Poblana for girls ages 13-16.
The new China Poblanas will receive their hats at a ceremony at a date to be determined, said event coordinator Ken Nelson.
“This year’s China event turned out to be a booming success,” he said. “We are so proud of all the contestants and appreciate all the support they each received. We were not sure how this year’s event was going to go, especially after having to cancel the 2020 event. We are so happy for the new China Poblanas and sad to say goodbye to our 2019 title holders. It has been a rough couple years for the outgoing Chinas, who basically were only able to participate in events for the first six months of their tenure before the pandemic hit.
“We would like to thank our outgoing China Poblanas for the work they did for our community and the organization. It was them that provided the Douglas China Poblana organization with the fee for 501© 3 application and provided DARC a check for $500 in 2020. We want to congratulate this year’s winners and are excited to hit the ground running on a busy year. This year’s fundraising will also be benefiting DARC. The Douglas China Poblana Organization has hopes of bringing back the Douglas Fiestas to Veterans Park in 2022.”
This year’s event marked the end to the reigns of the 2019 Douglas China Poblanas: Toddler China Poblana, Aaliyah Montes; Little China Poblana, Francelia Ballesteros; Junior China Poblana, Daniela Bernal; and Teen China Poblana, Mariana Fimbres.
According to history, the China Poblana, an Asian woman who lived in Puebla, came to Mexico in 1620 as a servant and left her mark on the traditions of the Spanish colonial region with her clothing. The China Poblana dress is a national symbol seen at the Fiestas Patrias Mexican Independence Day celebrations every September.