Smith County to recognize National Watermelon Queen and food bank donation


SMITH COUNTY, Texas (KETK) – Smith County will honor the National Watermelon Queen, and since she is from Tyler, Wiggins Farms will be donating two pallets of the red, juicy fruit to the East Texas Food Bank at 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday, September 15th.

Before the donation is made on Tuesday, the Smith County Commissioners Court will vote to adopt a resolution in honor of Ms. Huntington and Wiggins Farm’s donation to the East Texas Food Bank.

The National Watermelon Association Convention was held in Orlando, Florida.

Paige Huntington was crowned in February and represents the association at events throughout the county.

Huntington grew up in the agriculture industry. Her father was a second-generation rancher and at age 18, she took over the family ranch and ran it for three years.

Huntington attended the University of Texas Health Science Center at Tyler and is pursuing a master’s degree in public health. She graduated magna cum laude from Texas A&M University – Texarkana with a bachelors degree in psychology and was inducted into the National Society of Leadership and Success in 2018.

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In honor of this year’s National Watermelon Queen being from Tyler, Wiggins Farms will donate about 100 watermelons to the East Texas Food Bank on Tuesday for Hunger Action Month.

Wiggins Farms, based in Center, Texas, is a multi-generational family farm that represents the importance of farmers and the agriculture industry in East Texas.

Wiggins Farms distributes 40 million pounds of watermelons to grocery stores around the nation and Canada.

It was started in 1999, and has grown to include watermelon fields in Rio Grande Valley, Dilley and Center, Texas. It is still owned and operated by the Wiggins family.

Kerri Wiggins runs the farm with her husband, Darren, their two sons, Jesse and Jared, and her daughter-in-law.

Kerri Wiggins serves as the National Watermelon Queen Coordinator and Chaperone, accompanying Ms. Huntington when she travels to events.

Darren Wiggins and his two sons serve on different boards in the watermelon industry.

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