King & Queen Campaign

The Decatur Celebration King and Queen Campaign which consists of men and women utilizing their individual resources and creativity to raise funds towards their campaign to become King and Queen of the festival. The man and woman who raises the most funds will be crowned and become instant festival VIPs. We have a fun and creative group of royal contestants. Make sure to follow and support their campaigns.
Melanie Schelling | Melverta Wilkins | Nichole Corrington | Paula Thornton
Jim Asbhy | Rusty Johnson | Zane Peterson

Click here to donate to your favorite King or Queen’s campaign using your credit or debit card.
Make sure to enter the candidate’s name as the “Account Number” to make sure they receive credit.

Queen Contestants

Melanie Schelling
Agent
State Farm

Follow Melanie’s Campaign

Tell us a little about the work you do …

My JOB is to protect people with insurance and financial services.  But the WORK that I do is helping people when bad stuff happens, taking care of them during their worst times, and celebrating their successes.

Tell us a little about your immediate family …

I am happily married to my high school sweetheart, and we always have a house full of kids—some ours, some borrowed!

Tell us why you love Decatur Celebration …

Decatur celebration puts your entire body into overdrive. Meeting up with old friends, the food, the people watching, the entertainment, the smells, the rides, the live music …it is an unbelievable event that brings the community together.

Tell us why you would make a great King or Queen of Decatur Celebration …

I’d make a great queen because I love Decatur, and I love crowns!

Melverta Wilkins
Product Change Control Engineer
Caterpillar

Follow Melverta’s Campaign

Tell us a little about the work you do …

I work for Caterpillar Inc. as a Product Change Control Engineer.  Also, I am Founder and CEO of a 501c3 nonprofit organization Sista Girls and Friends. This organization was founded on a vision to build and cultivate women girls and families to meet their goals and promote success.

Tell us a little about your immediate family …

I am married to Tony Wilkins and have been for over 32 years. We have two children Brittoni and Marques and three grandchildren.  I also want to mention my large family here in Decatur…consisting of 7 siblings, aunts and cousins and my 90 year old Father Arthur Young Sr..

Tell us why you love Decatur Celebration …

I love Decatur Celebration!! I am a lifelong resident of Decatur so I was here when the Celebration started!!  It was awesome then and its awesome now!! The celebration brings a great season of fun!  I love it when I see classmates and friends who I haven’t seen in a while, the celebrations is great for reunions!!! It is absolutely my favorite time of the year, its Decatur’s own holiday.  Yes to the Celebration and Yes to Decatur an awesome combination.  The Celebration is Limitless and Decatur, I like it here!!

Tell us why you would make a great King or Queen of Decatur Celebration …
Since I am a Queen its only fitting for me to be the Celebration Queen!  This contest is a great  fun way to raise money for this amazing yearly celebration and to keep this celebration in our community.  I am so happy to be apart of this 30 year Queen Celebration contest and proud to say I have supported this event since it started!

 

Nichole Corrington
Owner/ Master Stylist
Capelli’s Hair Studio & Day Spa

Follow Nichole’s Campaign

Tell us a little about the work you do …

I am a Master Stylist at Capelli’s Hair Studio.  I have owned Capelli’s going on 7 years now.  I am a true believer in being passionate about the work you do.  This is not only my career/hobby it’s my LIFE!  I love every minute of what I do.  The feeling you get when you give someone a style/cut that completes their look is indescribable.

Tell us a little about your immediate family …

I am very close with my immediate family. I have an amazing 13 year old son in jr. high that keeps me busy all year round with soccer. I am 1 of 9 brothers and sisters, in which we’re all complete opposites but the best of friends. Both of my parents being self-employed most their careers has taught me a lot of self-discipline in my adult life with my career.

Tell us why you love Decatur Celebration …

I love the Decatur Celebration because I feel like it’s a time the whole community can come together and bring different fun family events that everyone can enjoy.  I feel like it gives everyone a time of year to look forward to.

Tell us why you would make a great King or Queen of Decatur Celebration …
I would make a great Queen of Decatur Celebration because I think it’s a great way to support the community with bringing together ideas and events to keep the celebration going.  There was a time when Decatur was worried that it wasn’t going to be supported and with great ideas like this one it allows us all to come together and help raise the money to continue this great event.

Paula Thornton
Community Relations Coordinator
Ameren Illinois

Follow Paula’s Campaign

Tell us a little about the work you do …

I am the local “face” of Ameren Illinois. I work between the company and the public to help inform customers about gas and electric issues, including safety, energy efficiency, reliability, and infrastructure improvements.  I also work with municipal leaders during emergencies, to keep them informed about outages, and when power will be restored.  I cover Decatur, Bloomington, and Springfield, and the territory in between.  Prior to joining the team at Ameren, I worked as an investigative reporter at WAND-TV.

Tell us a little about your immediate family …

I have an older brother and two extremely supportive and loving parents. They live in the city of Chicago.

Tell us why you love Decatur Celebration …

I have incredible memories from over the years.  My first week working in Decatur was during the Celebration.  I did my first live shot for WAND in Central Park, among all the commotion.  The next year, I met the love of my life (and current boyfriend) at the Celebration, thanks to the incredible Heinkel’s Hot Dog Eating Contest.  I love being able to dance in the streets of the town I love, surrounded by family and friends during the biggest party of the year.

Tell us why you would make a great King or Queen of Decatur Celebration …

The Decatur Celebration is positive, offers excellent exposure for the city, and it can even bring people in to stay and build lives here.  I am one of those people.  The Decatur Celebration plays a part in my personal history—and is part of the reason why I have chosen to make Decatur my home.  I would be a great Queen because I represent the positive magnetic pull the Celebration can have on people. Plus, I know how to have a good time.

 

King Contestants

James “Jim” Edward Ashby III or King James III
Owner/General Manager
Wood Printing

Follow Jim’s Campaign

Tell us a little about the work you do …

Provide print solutions for our customers

Tell us a little about your immediate family …

Engaged to Tammy Moore – I have two kids – James Edward “Blake” Ashby IV and Alysa Rae Ashby

Blake is 24 and works at ADM.  He has two daughters.  My granddaughters are Raeleigh Louise – 4 and Laini James – 1

Alysa is 16 and a Junior at Maroa-Forsyth and is involved with cheerleading, softball & volleyball.  She was just inducted into the National Honor Society.

I also have a bonus daughter – Amanda Jo(Tammy’s baby girl) – She is 22 and a recent graduate of Millikin.  She will be getting married in July.

Tell us why you love Decatur Celebration …

The energy and excitement of the weekend and the many people coming together.  I enjoy the live music in that atmosphere and of course the food & beer!!

Tell us why you would make a great King or Queen of Decatur Celebration …

Well obviously my parents named me with the intent of becoming royalty – haha

Seriously, I would be an ambassador for this great event and spread the word throughout the land.

 

Rusty Johnson
IT Procurement Specialist
ADM

Follow Rusty’s Campaign

Tell us a little about the work you do …

I purchase IT hardware and software for our locations globally.

Tell us a little about your immediate family …

My parents, Rusty and Jodee Johnson, are from the area. My sisters, Kristy and Shannon, and I went to Mt. Zion all through school. My dad works for ADM, my mom has her own home cleaning business, Kristy is an X-ray tech at DMH, and Shannon is also in Procurement/Sales with Bearing distributors. My Wife, Elizabeth, and I got married in Oct 2014 and we have two 8 year old daughters, Cameron and Bailey, who are in 2nd grade in Mt. Zion.

Tell us why you love Decatur Celebration …

I love the Celebration because it’s a great time to spend time with family and friends to “close out” the summer, as well as a huge event for the city. People always complain about not having anything to do in Decatur, so once a year we at least have the Celebration to look forward to. It’s good for local businesses and great, positive exposure for the city. Plus, where else are you going to get to see Boyz II Men, Color Me Badd, and Salt-N-Pepa for free?

Tell us why you would make a great King or Queen of Decatur Celebration …

I would make a good King because I genuinely care to help the Decatur Celebration. I want to help shed a positive light on event and want to keep it strong and alive for generations to come. I have many fond memories of spending time at Celebration and I hope my children get to experience the same kind of memories with their friends as they get older.

 

Zane Peterson
Real Estate Broker at Brinkoetter & Assocaites
Co-Founder of University Dogs

Follow Zane’s Campaign

Tell us a little about the work you do …

I really enjoy helping current and first-time homeowners buy or sell real estate to fit their individual and family needs.  Likewise, I enjoy assisting commercial clients find the right location, while negotiating favorable terms, to give their business the best success to grow its operations and help stimulate the local economy.

While attending, as well as after graduating from, Millikin University I have had experience in creating, launching and managing the University Dogs restaurant.  Over the past couple years I have taken a step back from the day-to-day operations and have helped lead the U Dogs team on the organizational and managerial side.

Tell us a little about your immediate family …

I’m an only child.  My father Jim Peterson and grandmother Joan Peterson are proud Decatur residents.  While my mother Audrey lives in Chicago suburbs.  I’m recently engaged to long-time college sweetheart Abby Robertson, with a wedding date TBA.  My English bulldog ‘Matilda’ is often the center of attention and definitely considered a part of the royal family.

Tell us why you love Decatur Celebration …

The Decatur Celebration is a local holiday!  It’s great to be able to look at my calendar months in advance and know not to make any major plans the first weekend of August.   Very cool to see the community pull together and host a free festival that’s comparable to any large event across the nation.

Tell us why you would make a great King or Queen of Decatur Celebration …

I would make a fabulous celebration King for I’m all about highlighting the positives in our community and working with organizations to continue to make Decatur a greater community to live and grow.  The Decatur Celebration is one of them!