First Princess with Down Syndrome Represented at the National Cherry Festival

As the National Cherry Festival in Traverse City comes to a close, there are a handful of first graders who don’t want their N.C.F. duties to end. Especially Prince Will and Princess Emsley from Trinity Lutheran.

“It’s every first grader’s dream to be the prince and princess so it’s a real honor for Will and Emsley. They’re great kids together and it’s been a lot of fun,” says Emsley’s mother, Linda Slater-Marschner.

This dream turned reality has been particularly special for Emsley. She is the first N.C.F. princess with Down Syndrome to be represented and has been treated like true royalty all week long. 

“She is my friend from school and she is my princess,” says Prince Will.

This prince and princess duo are making the most out of their N.C.F. experience and taking their roles very seriously.”Will and Emsley are the best of friends. Will is very kind and sweet and making sure she’s always taken care of and not in any harm or danger and Emsley speaks very highly of her prince,” says Linda.

This week is not just about the crown or the perfect princess wave – it’s an opportunity to show that everyone is deserving of feeling worthy and that they belong.

“Inclusion is important because it shows people what an individuals ability is and an individual who has Down syndrome- it just shows they have the same abilities as everyone else,” says Linda, Emsley’s mother.

If you are interested in learning more about the N.C.F. Prince and Princess program, click here. 

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