NEWS

Donaldsonville Krewe of Elks celebrate 89th annual carnival ball

Michael Tortorich
Donaldsonville Chief

The Donaldsonville Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks held its 89th annual carnival ball Feb. 19 at the Assumption Parish Community Center in Napoleonville.

The ball returned after being cancelled in 2021 due to COVID-19. According to the krewe, the only other cancellation in the event's history was during World War II.

Fran Aucoin and Dave LeBlanc served as masters of ceremonies. The Assumption High School JROTC color guard opened the ceremony, as Austin Cedotal sang the national anthem.

The 2022 ball committee included Kathryn "KK" Hebert, Rodney "REV" Vega, Bobby Charleville, Travis Cedotal, Dee Dee DiBenedetto, Ronald Lachica, Beth Rivers, Kay Baker, Kiley Spano, and Celeste Spano.

The event featured a special presentation of King Jolly Goodfellow the 72nd, Ronnie Nicholas Allen, and his daughter, Megan Allen Mayhew.

Reigning King Jolly Goodfellow the 87th David Michael Mistretta was introduced with Queen Caroline Elizabeth Mistretta. She wore the crown of her sisters, Lauren Mistretta and Kaitlyn Mistretta.

The ball captain and co-captain, Lee Melancon and Stephanie Allee, entered next.

The audience then welcomed King Jolly Goodfellow the 89th Stacey Guy Allee.

A native of St. James and a graduate of Ascension Catholic High School, he attended both Nicholls State University and LSU. He is the owner and partner of Allee and Allen Farms and Care Farms. 

Southern Lotus Dance Studio then entertained the crowd with a lively and colorful display.

Bernard and Lisa Bergeron then entered. Natives of St. James and Paincourtville, they served as a royal couple in 2008.

Ronald Lachica and Dee Dee DiBenedetto followed, then Jeremiah Guy Allee and Haley Michelle St. Martin.

Lee Hymel and Sarah Elaine Allee entered, then Evan Scott Hazlewood and Amanda Maree Allee. 

Royal court members were Grand Duke Sam Ourso Mire and Grand Duchesses Emily Marie Beck and Brooke Marie Gautreau.

Duchesses included Miranda Michelle Landry, Madison Elizabeth Tripode, and Catherine Alison Rome.

Junior Dukes were Jackson Louis Richay and Travis Michael "TJ" Cedotal.

Princesses were Georgia Ann Vega, Addison Marie Wilkinson, and Sydney Grace Viallon.

Queen Stacey Gabrielle Allee then entered. She is a native of St. Amant and a graduate of St. Amant High School. She attends River Parishes Community College and works for Care Farms.

The queen's page was Mary Katherine "Katie" Mayhew.

The band Party at Joe's capped the night with a performance.

The lodge extended thanks to Kathryn "KK" Hebert, Lee Melancon, Bobby Charleville, Amber Kimble, Travis and Shelly Cedotal, TJ and Alex Cedotal, Rodney "REV" Vega, Cookie Vega, Rebecca Rome, Beth Rivers, Kiley Spano, Juanita Pearley, Kay Baker, Celeste Spano, Heather Dore, Ronald Lachica, Dee Dee DiBenedetto, Sarah Allee, Jonathan Scharwath, Lydia Hambrick, Maria Joseph, Allen Eschete, Assumption Parish President Patrick Johnson and the parish's police jurors, Assumption Parish law enforcement officers, Austin Cedotal, the Assumption High School JROTC color guard, and Party at Joe's.