Vignettes about Events & People

The Arkalalah Queen's Coronation was held for the first time in W.S. Scott Auditorium in 1936.


Queen Alalah Coronation


The coronation of Queen Alalah and her court has been a tradition in Arkansas City dating back to 1928, the first year Arkalalah was held and the first year a queen was crowned. In its early years, coronation was held at the Fifth Avenue Opera House.


It was located where the Arkansas City Recreation Center is today.


Coronation was held at the Opera House in 1928, 1929, 1930, and 1931. It then moved to the Burford Theater and was held there the next four years, 1932, 1933, 1934, and 1935.


In 1936, when the Auditorium/Gymnasium, now known as W.S. Scott Auditorium, was ready for use, the ninth Queen Alalah Coronation was held with special permission coming from the general contractor of the building. The stage was incomplete, with the exception of the main blue curtain at the front. An over-capacity audience enjoyed the coronation ceremony, the program, and the luxury of the building, the best of its kind in Kansas at that time.


However, the coronation did not permanently stay in W.S. Scott Auditorium since 1936.


In 1981, coronation had to be moved to the Agri-Business Building because a tornado heavily damaged the roof of W.S. Scott Auditorium earlier that year. A second tornado hit the building in 1983, and once again, coronation had to be moved to the Ag Building. There also was a period of eight or nine years, from the late 1960s to the late 1970s, when the coronation was held in the Arkansas City Middle School auditorium.


Each year, W.S. Scott Auditorium is filled to capacity as the community comes out in support of Arkalalah and the Friday night Queen’s Coronation.

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