Fallon Portuguese Festa: Meet the queens

Junior Queen Lila Mae Montero Rodrigues.

Junior Queen Lila Mae Montero Rodrigues.
Provided to the LVN


I am Kaitlynn Hoffmann your 2023 Portuguese Queen.

I am a 17-year-old junior at Churchill County High School. I am involved in the medical program and varsity volleyball. For fun I enjoy surfing. After high school I plan on entering the medical field as an x-ray and ultrasound technician.

My great-great-grandfather Joe Soares was born in 1894, in Flores, Azorean Islands, Portugal.

Joe and Annie Soares moved to Fallon in 1920. My paternal great-grandparents are Frank and Viola Soares. My paternal grandparents are Debra Soares Hoffmann and Alan Hoffmann. My maternal grandparents are Mike and Terri Calleas. My parents are David and Kristy Hoffmann, and I have an older brother, Colton.

I have been involved in the Portuguese Festa my entire life and I am thrilled to be this year’s queen.


Hello, my name is Lila Mae Montero Rodrigues. I am 11 years old and I attend Oasis Academy and I’m in the sixth grade. I have a little sister named Bonnie. I enjoy reading, learning about science, and showing my rabbits, Guinea pigs, and chickens. I also love singing, dancing, acting, and doing art.

My great-great-grandfather, Antonio Damazio came to the United States from Portugal when he was 19 years old. His wife, my great-great-grandmother, Edith, came from the Azores. Their son, John Souza Damazio, lived in Fallon for 40 years and loved keeping the Portuguese festa tradition alive. This year I get the honor of continuing our tradition by representing the junior queen. This is my 10th year participating and it is something I look forward every year.


My name is Harley Rose Gomes, and I am this year's Fallon Portuguese Festa Mini Queen. I am 7 years old and attend the Oasis Academy School. I am in first grade. I love to ride my horse Blueberry and I play softball and this year I wrestled.

My parents are Lance and Rachelle Gomes and I have a big brother, Ryan.

My great-great-grandfather was Jose Francisco Gomes, he was born in Flores. He came to the United States about 1854, he worked in the Virginia City mines. He became a citizen and then went back to the Azores. My great-grandfather Fernando Gomes came to the United States in 1913 with his brothers. He married Maria Serpa, daughter of Joseph Freitas Serpa Jr., and Maria do Rosario Mendonsa. Their only child was my great-grandfather John Serpa Gomes, born here in Fallon. My grandpa Joseph Gomes was also born here in Fallon. That is my Portuguese heritage.

I have been a part of the Fallon Festa since I was born. I am so happy to be the Mini Queen this year!


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