Greetings from Georgia!
We’re proud to report on a tremendous annual conference back in St. Simons this year. We held our meeting at
the Sea Palms Golf & Spa Resort where attendees enjoyed
a day at the shooting range, golf course and a packed out
More than 250 growers and watermelon agribusinesses
joined us this year and we raised $240,000 through the live
auction. A BIG THANKS to our load donors, buyers and
other auction supporters for this 2014 event. This association will thrive due to your support and passion for the
industry and we’re excited about the upcoming year. Also,
thanks for the support given by our CORPORATE sponsors for the meeting; it would not be possible without your
We had five top notch contestants for our annual queen
contest this year that competed thanks to our contestant
sponsors. THANK YOU Leger & Son Inc., Randy Ellis
Farms, Darren and Tammy Deal, Ricky Tucker Farms, and
Gerrald’s Vidalia Sweet Onion, Inc. for your support of our
contestants! Congratulations to our 2nd runner up, Kayna
Clemons sponsored by Darren and Tammy Deal and 1st
runner up and winner of the Ms. Jubilee award, Carla
Penney, sponsored by Randy Ellis Farms. Finally –
congratulations to our 2014 Georgia Watermelon Queen, Miss
Jennifer Leann Eadie! Jennifer is from Sylvester, Georgia,
but currently lives in Macon and is a senior pursuing her
History degree at Wesleyan College. She was sponsored
by Leger & Son, Inc.
Jennifer has already been on the road for her promotional year and we have several exciting things planned
for the spring. She visited the Capitol and received a
Proclamation from the House of Representatives through
Representative Buddy Harden. She also attended and was
interviewed at the annual Cordele-Crisp County Fish Fry
that afternoon at the Railroad Depot. Later this spring,
Jennifer will head back to Atlanta for Ag Day at the Capitol, travel to Orlando for Watermelon Ambassador Training
with the National Watermelon Promotion Board, and head
to Charleston, SC to hand out watermelon to the thousands
of runners at the Cooper River Bridge Marathon with several other state queens. Also this month, Jennifer will take
part in a marketing campaign for the Georgia Watermelon
Association where she will be filmed showing consumers
tips on how to safely consume watermelon. This video will
be connected to a QR code, which will be placed in retail
If you are interested in booking our new Georgia Watermelon Queen, please call ahead to schedule a date for our
2014 tour by contacting Samantha Tankersley Kilgore at
706-845-8575 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
In closing, GWA would like to congratulate Miss Carol
Anne Mitchell on an outstanding 2013 year and a great job
representing our state and industry at the 100th Celebration
National Watermelon Convention held in Savannah, Georgia. You have been a blessing to this association and you
have so much ahead of you!
Looking forward to seeing you all this summer!
Samantha Tankersley Kilgore
Greetings from the Alabama Association!
The 32nd annual Alabama Watermelon Association
Convention was held in February at the Beau Rivage
Resort in Biloxi, Mississippi. The convention was full
of fun, excitement, and even karaoke! This year was a
great success and a special thank you to all the sponsors:
Allen Lund Company, Billy Smith’s Watermelons, Inc.,
Clifton Seed Company, Genecco Produce, International
Paper, LTF Greenhouses, McMelon, Inc, Morgan Wood
Products, National Watermelon Association, National
Watermelon Promotion Board, RockTenn, Sakata Seed,
Sunny Fresh, Valdosta Plant Company, and Williams
Manis Produce Marketing. Thank you all for making
our convention not only possible, but a great success.
There are a few more people who received awards
for their hard work, generosity, and support. Mr. Terry
Jones, Southern Quality Shippers received the King
Buyer Award and Mr. Rantz Smith, Smith Farms of Bell,
Inc received the King Donor Award. Ray Gilliland of
Ray Gilliland Melons received the Lifetime Achievement Award. Mrs. Corliss Smith of Billy Smith’s Watermelons received the Jan Ware Award. Mr. Jay Jones
of Sakata Seed received the Outstanding Service Award.
Thank you all for your dedication the association, it is
One last farewell to the 2011 Alabama Watermelon
Queen, Miss Ann-Marie Urrutia. A special thank you
for all your hard work and dedication, over the past year.
You have represented the Alabama Association with
great pride and elegance! Ann-Marie has been an outstanding representative for our association. In addition,
thank you to all that helped make her year so special.
We had four outstanding young women competing for the 2012 Alabama Watermelon Queen position.
Miss Meghan Patterson of Thorsby, sponsored by Sunny
Fresh, Miss Leah Knight of Berry sponsored by McMelon, Miss Amber Nolin of Enterprise, sponsored by
Billy Smith’s Watermelons, and Miss Jaime Minor of
Muscle Shoals, sponsored by Gulf Seed. Congratulations to Miss Amber Nolin on your new role as the 2012
Alabama Watermelon Queen. Miss Amber is the 20
year old daughter of Greg and Renea Nolin. She lives
in Enterprise and attends Enterprise Sate Community
Amber and I are both very excited to get this year
started. We will be attending the Florida Watermelon
Convention on March 23rd-25th in Tampa, FL. Following that Amber will attend the Queen Training hosted
by the National Watermelon Promotion Board, visit
elementary schools, attend watermelon festivals, and
complete a farm tour. Amber is eager to start her year
learning about and promoting watermelons.
Newly crowned Queen Amber with her sponsor, Mr. Billy and
Mrs. Corliss Smith.
Queen Amber with Mr. Kelley and Mrs. Jean Marinaro
An amazing group of “has beens!”
Queen Kimberly, Queen Whitney, Queen Amber, Queen Ann-
Marie, and Queen Katelyn
2nd runner up, Leah Knight, Queen Amber, and 1st runner up
Queen Ann-Marie receiving her beautiful watermelon jewelry
from the AWA board.
Contestants ready for opening number.
Contestants getting tips on the seed spit competition from Mr.
Visiting Queens, contestants, board members and special guest
after the auction at the AWA convention.
All the beautiful contestants ready for evening gown
Queen Ann-Marie and Queen Katelyn, Congratulations on
With Affirmed, Bold Ruler and Citation,
Growers across the country are enjoying the
benefits of wide adaptability, high yield,
excellent uniformity and sweet flavor.
© 2012 Sakata Seed America, Inc.
GWA Queen Contestants, Carol Anne and other state queens
are ready to seed spit
GWA Board member Mitch Mitchell squares up for the swing
at the Sea Palms Golf Course.
Queen Jennifer Eadie at the
Georgia House of
Jennifer with Secretary of State Brian Kemp at the Fish Fry
Jennifer gets interviewed at the Cordele- Crisp
Annual Event in Atlanta
Outgoing Queen Carol Anne Mitchell gives her speech to the
Black at the
Department of Ag!
Runner Up Kayna
Jennifer Eadie and
1st Runner Up Carla
Queen Jennifer and Coordinator Samantha had fun meeting
Georgie at the Commissioner’s office!
Al and Debbie Wroten prep for skeet shooting in St. Simons
Commissioner Gary Black, new Queen Jennifer Eadie
and Mr. Buddy Leger
off auction items