Leah’s love affair with everything Jacaranda
THE Jacaranda Festival has been a part of Leah Wallace's life for as long as she can remember.
Fond memories of dancing around the maypole in Jacaranda Ave with her grandmother intertwine with flashbacks of riding in the float procession on her father's milk truck and dancing at queen crownings.
Now she plans to create new memories as a 2015 Jacaranda Queen candidate.
A young mother, wife, student and business owner and soon-to-be home-owner, The Daily Examiner's front counter assistant already has a lot on her plate but said she felt it was important to be able to give back to the community and to be a good role model for her one-year-old daughter Katherine.
"I want to show my daughter that she can do whatever she wants," she said.
"I'm a working mother that runs my own business and doing this is just another thing to show her she can do anything she puts her mind to. For me, it's about being deserving of the 'role model' title.
"I was raised by this town in a time when it was perfectly acceptable for my neighbours to tell me to behave and now I want to give something back."
Despite living in Melbourne for five years before returning to the Valley, Mrs Wallace has only missed two Jacaranda Festivals.
"For my husband James and I, the Jacaranda Festival is better than the Melbourne Cup," she said.
"This was always home and we're very happy to be back."
Leah's Jacaranda Queen quest is proudly sponsored by The Daily Examiner.