David Douglas High welcomes “Princess Samantha”

Meet the 2014 Portland Rose Festival Princess Samantha Westmoreland. Sand see why her 3,000 fans aren’t wrong about cheering her selection …

Some of the 3,000 David Douglas High School students at the assembly can be seen on both sides “red carpet”, rolled out before members of the school’s the 2014 Portland Rose Festival Court were to arrive.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
With the 2014 Portland Rose Festival Princess citywide selection process in full swing, David Douglas High School (DDHS) met their new Princess at an all-school assembly the morning of March 6.

The cacophony of shuffling feet, talking, and backpack shifting tapered to near silence, as the 3,000 students and staff turned to the American Flag and prepared to recite the Pledge of Allegiance.

The DDHS Court members – Madison Adrian, Isabella Guynes, Shelby Hansmann, and Samantha Westmoreland, smile as the program gets underway.

From the rear of the large gymnasium, down a red carpet, Madison Adrian, Isabella Guynes, Shelby Hansmann, and Samantha Westmoreland were escorted to the stage.

Each member of the Court was asked to comment on a topic, important to her life. But, this segment of the show was played for humor – there were no “I’ll save the world” speeches.

Court Member Shelby Hansmann’s gymnastics student shows how he’s learned from her (or not) how to perform a cartwheel.

Instead, each Princess candidate provided a brief skit:

  • Shelby, asked about her skills as a gymnastics coach, brought out one of her “students” – a young man who tried, but failed, to demonstrate a cartwheel.
  • Isabella said how she loved to spend her spare time horseback riding – but was interrupted by a student in a horse costume frolicking through the gym.
  • At her part-time job as a coffee barista, Madison was asked about her most complicated order – which was a chai tea, low water, half 2%, half soy, extra foam, no whip cream.
  • And, when Samantha said her favorite TV show was The Bachelor – a “bachelor” rushed to the stage in an effort to court her.


2013’s David Douglas Portland Rose Festival Princess Kelsey Milks says she’s been happy and proud to represent her school at the Portland Rose Festival.

Then, Kelsey Milks, 2013 David Douglas Portland Rose Festival Princess, took the stage.

“I am very happy to be back here this morning,” smiled outgoing Princess Kelsey.

“Representing the largest high school in the state was my honor. And, the last year has been an unforgettable experience. I’ve met incredible people and developed incredible relationships other Princesses. I’ve also been supported by my family, friends, and the community.

“The ladies on my Court were truly remarkable, and I will keep in touch for many years to come. With 16 girls on a bus for endless hours, things can happen. There can be drama – and also laughter. We created close bonds and wonderful memories I’ll never want to forget.”

Turning to the 2014 Scots’ Portland Rose Festival Court, Princes Kelsey admonished. “Remember, there’s always ‘just one more picture’ – so smile!”

Pacific Power Mentor Michelle Follette presents gifts to each Princess Candidate.

The students rumble their feet on the wooden bleachers, providing “tympani roll” – ready and eager to learn who will represent the Scots during the 2014 Portland Rose Festival.

Introducing David Douglas High School’s 2014 Portland Rose Festival Princess – Samantha Westmoreland.

She looked surprised as David Douglas High senior, 18-year-old Samantha Westmoreland learned she’d be the one representing the school during the 2014 Portland Rose Festival activities.

Princess Samantha addresses student and faculty.

“I am so honored to represent you at the Portland Rose Festival,” Princess Samantha greeted her subjects. “Thank you all for your support.”

Shutters clicked and strobes flashed, as Princess Samantha and her Court posed for photos.

The 2014 DDHS Court – Madison Adrian, Isabella Guynes, and Shelby Hansmann – stands behind Portland Rose Festival Princess Samantha Westmoreland.

“I am so excited I don’t even know what to think,” said Princess Samantha as she spoke with East Portland News during her first interview as a Portland Rose Festival Princess. “It’s overwhelming.  I’m feeling so many emotions. Mostly, I am so excited.”

She continued, “I love David Douglas High School so much. I’ve ‘grown up’ a lot here. It’s such an honor to be able to represent the people here in our diverse school.”

Princess Samantha said she thinks of her Court members as friends, not rivals. “We’ve been friends all throughout high school. Any one of these girls could have been selected, for sure. We’re all really supportive of each other, and that’s really cool.”

Watching it all was DDHS Principal John Bier. “It’s really wonderful.

“I well up with emotion I hear them talk so positively about their experience at David Douglas – how much they love our culture and diversity,” Bier remarked. “I sometimes feel like my accomplishments are not that much, compared with what each of them do in school, and for their community.”

During her time at DDHS, Honor Roll member and current Second Vice-President of the Student Body Princess Samantha also played volleyball, and has been in two choirs. She plans to earn a Bachelors and Masters Degree in nursing, with a possible minor in psychology.

Her education – like all of the Portland Rose Festival Court members – will be aided by a $3,500 scholarship from The Randall Group.

Look for Princess Samantha during her favorite Portland Rose Festival Event, the Starlight Parade, starting at 8:30 p.m. in downtown Portland.

Congratulations to Portland Rose Festival Parkrose Scots’ representative – Princess Samantha Westmoreland!

Plan now to cheer on your 2014 DDHS Scotts Portland Rose Festival Princess Samantha Westmoreland on Saturday, June 7, when the selection of this year’s Rose Festival Queen’s Coronation gets underway at 8:00 a.m. in Portland Veteran’s Memorial Coliseum, just before the Grand Floral Parade.

For more information, see the official Portland Rose Festival website: CLICK HERE.

© 2014 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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