ST. CLOUD (WJON News) -- It's not exactly a front-row seat, but several students and staff of St. Cloud State University will be close to the action this weekend for the coronation of King Charles III.

Wade Sherman is the St. Cloud State University Alnwick Resident Coordinator in England. He says they have a special program planned at their castle with members of the royal family.

The Duke and Duchess of Northumberland will be here.  The Duchess is the Lord Left Tenant for this part of the United Kingdom.  She represents the royal family when they are not able to be present at something.  They are putting on all sorts of special events.  It's being broadcast live on a massive screen in the castle courtyard.

SCSU has just finished its term, so they are in between semesters which means they have about 10 people with ties to the university at Alnwich right now. They will have about 200 people there for the summer semester.

Millions in Britain will watch broadcasts when King Charles III is crowned this weekend in Westminster Abbey. Tens of thousands will line the streets, and neighborhoods across the country will hold parties. Sherman says they have a student who helped organize the local events.

One of our students has been actively working with the town council to coordinate some of the events the town council is organizing for the coronation and has been actively engaged in all of that.  The bunting is out all around town with the British flag.

St. Cloud State University has had a program in England since 1976. Sherman says Charles has visited the castle in past years.

We've been fortunate at St. Cloud State here in Alnwick to have King Charles come visit the castle several times and actually meet the students.  I think that creates a great sense of pride.  For the students that have had that opportunity, this is going to be another special event.

In London, the coronation ceremony has been slimmed down to about 2,000 invited guests, compared to 8,000 people who attended the last coronation 70 years ago in 1953 for Queen Elizabeth II.

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Britain's monarchy is 1,000 years old.

Charles is the monarch of 14 former British colonies as well as the U.K. However, the number is likely to dwindle during his reign.  Barbados became a republic in 2021 and Jamaica is planning to do the same.

Queen Elizabeth died in September after 70 years on the throne.


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