Rose Queen and Court Field Visitors’ Questions on Hotline

Rose Queen Ana Acosta answers a visitor\'s question.Rose Queen Ana Acosta with Princesses Elyssia Widjaja and Elizabeth WoolfPrincess Elizabeth Woolf and Rose Queen Ana Acosta on the phonesPrincesses Jamie Kwong and Elizabeth WoolfPrincess Jamie Kwong answers a question as a TV reporter listens inPrincess Jamie, Princess Sarah, Princess Katie, Queen Ana, Princess Elyssia, Princess Elizabeth and Princess KaylaPrincess Kayla Johnson-Granbery and Princess Katie Lipp

Story and Photography by LAURA B. MONTEROS

1:50 pm | December 30, 2013

The Rose Queen and Royal Court were at the Pasadena Convention Center to cut the ribbon for the official opening of the Visitors Hotline for the 2014 Tournament of Roses today. Seasoned volunteers—some have been answering the phones for 30 years—gave the girls a quick primer in how to use the phone system as the callers began ringing in when the ribbon dropped.

“We love answering these questions!” Princess Sarah Hansen said enthusiastically. Each station has a computer that helps with answers, but sometimes experience is the key. That’s when the girls turned to a Convention Center employee or volunteer.

“This person wants to know how close to the ocean Newport Beach is,” Princess Elizabeth Woolf queried, getting a chuckle from some of the other princesses. Evidently, some of the callers are poking a bit of fun; after answering a query about Gold Line stations, Sarah said, “That was a real question!”

The girls had a friendly race to see who could pick up incoming calls the fastest. There was no tally on who the winner was. Princesses Katie Lipp, Jamie Kwong, and Elizabeth had a good time trying on the party hats that served as table decorations. The event was just one of half a dozen the Court will attend today, Princess Elyssia Widjaja said.

Asked how people responded when they realized that royalty was on the other end of the line, Princess Kayla Johnson-Granberry said, “Sometimes people go straight to the question, sometimes they say congratulations.” Queen Ana Acosta remarked, “Sometimes they are excited. Sometimes—they don’t know who I am yet.” Yet. But they are sure to very soon.