Pyles crowned 2018 KMLF Queen

Published 9:32 am Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Traditions are a hard thing to keep down, and for 88 years running, the Kentucky Mountain Laurel Festival has been holding it’s Queen Coronation ceremony outdoors in a picturesque, almost fairytale like setting.

For the first time in 22 years, the annual Queen Coronation had to be held at a different location from the Cove in Pine Mountain State Park due to pesky weather. The ceremony was moved to the old Pineville High School gym and festivities were commenced.

A little bit of wetness wasn’t going to put a damper on the the 88th Kentucky Mountain Laurel Queen Coronation. Each year, young ladies from across the state proudly represent their college or university as candidates for the KMLF Queen Pageant.

Gabrielle Chandler Pyles, representing Lindsey Wilson College, won the judges votes this year and was named the 2018 queen.

The queen’s court, a tradition of the 88-year-old ceremony, is made up of young ladies representing area elementary and high schools, along with the remaining queen candidates. The court also paraded through the crowd participating in the long-standing pageant.

The ceremony went off without a hitch, despite the weather not cooperating. After the queen was crowned, the crowd all join in singing “My Old Kentucky Home”putting a the finishing seal on another successful year of the KMLF.

All of the candidates took part in the Queen’s Ball later that night — where there was even a surprise marriage proposal from one of the candidate’s escorts, which was accepted.