Coronation has been part of the Sun Bowl since the first-ever college Sun Bowl game was played in 1936. Coronation played a huge social role in the “Sun Carnival”, the week long pageantry associated with the Sun Bowl.
According to the 1938 Sun Bowl game program, “The social side of the Sun Carnival centers around the Coronation of the Sun Queen with Ladies-In-Waiting and her Royal Court of Princesses from all the cities of the Sun Empire and the Grand Ball tendered by the Association in honor of Her Majesty and Court.”
In the early years of the coronation, about 30 young women were part of the formal coronation, and each participant represented an organization.
Today, from five-to-nine or more individuals are chosen for the court, including one queen. Selection is based on poise, appearance, personality, communication and interpersonal skills and the ability to demonstrate knowledge of El Paso. Contestants must be enrolled as full-time students.
Princesses and the queen serve as ambassadors for the city of El Paso. They volunteer at various community events and make appearances at the Western Refining College All-America Golf Classic, FirstLight Sun Bowl Parade, WestStar Bank Don Haskins Sun Bowl Basketball Invitational, Hyundai Sun Bowl Game, Academy Sports + Outdoors Sun Bowl International Soccer Tournament, the Helen of Troy Sun Court Charm Camp and other events throughout the year.