Being Miss Maumee Valley

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Best of Luck to the Miss Northwestern Ohio and Miss Lake Erie Pageants, both tonight!

Like last Saturday, it’s another double crown night!... But more traditionally, that means two separate pageants, some three hours away from each other. In Defiance, the beautiful Marisa Minor will crown a new Miss Northwestern Ohio and in Lexington, the talented Leslie Ondrey will give up her final title, Miss Lake Erie!

[The photo above was snapped by Jerry Deitsch from the balcony after Miss Ohio was crowned this past July. None of us remember this moment and it’s pretty impressive that he caught it with no one onstage around us! L-R: Leslie, me and Marisa.]

I had to joy of crowing Marisa Miss Northwestern Ohio last year; this was her second title, having also been a Miss Lake Festival like me. We hail from the same county and it has been wonderful getting to know her over the past couple years. At Miss Ohio this past July Marisa was in the Top 10 and for a second year in a row won the Miss America Community Service award for her work with Big Brothers/Big Sisters. I’m sure she will contribute to a wonderful show tonight with her vocal talent. Miss Ohio, Melanie Murphy, will also be at this pageant serving as a co-emcee! It begins at 7:30 in the Defiance Community Auditorium. CLICK HERE for more information.

This program lost two of its contestants last weekend when Lauren Hogan and Kristen Haas won my titles, but rumor has it the following women, listed in alphabetical order, are still competing:

*Danielle Bash is an 18 year old harpist from Findley who advocates Arts in Schools.

*Jamie Burns of Delta is a 19 year old Tap Dancer; her platform is Arthritis Awareness.

*Cassandra Fruchey is a vocalist from Napoleon who’s platform is the Pressures of Sex. She is 22.

*Abigail Goldsmith is an 18 year old from Swanton; she twirls Baton and her platform is Preventing Animal Cruelty.

*Hannah Hauman is a 17 year old from Findlay; she is a vocalist who promotes programs for Mental and Physical Disabilities.

*Racheal Maris is a vocalist from Ada, this 22 year olds platform is Visual impairment in children.

*Mellissa Marksberry is a Defiance native who advocates Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Awareness. For her talent this 22 year old will perform a vocal selection.

*Becky Minger is an 18 year old vocalist from Sylvania; she advocates Building Self Esteem in youth.

*Samantha Pixler is a 17 year old Defiance native; she is a vocalist whose platform is Involvement in School Organizations.

*Heather Waterman of Celina is a 19 year old vocalist; her platform is the Importance of Mentoring.

*Tiffany Westfall of Liberty Center is a 17 year old gymnastics. She advocates Ovarian Caner Awareness and Research.

*Brandy Jo Willoughby is a 20 year old comedian from Findlay; her platform is Positive Messages for Youth.

*Janelle Zindroski is a BGSU student originally from North Royalton; this 19 year old will perform a vocal talent and advocates Teen Volunteering.

Note, participation in this program is restricted to women in specific northwestern Ohio counties.

Leslie Ondrey has been a fierce competitor at Miss Ohio for the past three years, placing in the Top 5 with each of her local titles and twice winning preliminary talent awards for her operatic performances! Unfortunately, like me, she has reached the dreaded age of 24, meaning she can no longer compete in the Miss America system. I’m certain tonight she will put on a phenomenal final performance as she gives up the title, Miss Lake Erie. The pre-show will begin at 7 p.m. at Lexington High School. CLICK HERE for more information about this program, which
is open to contestants from across the state.

I only know of a few women competing in this program, they are:

*Amy Allen, a graduate student at Mount Vernon. She is a vocalist who works with Habitat for Humanity.

*Jillian Dansko is a tap dancer attending John Carroll University. Her platform is Arts for the Disabled.

*Alyssa Speicher is a baton twirler attending Ohio State University; she advocates Increasing Awareness for Cardiovascular Disease.

I think Brandi Herceg is competing, she is a dancer attending Franciscan University; her platform is “Healthy Hearts are Happy Hearts.”

Best of luck to Randy, Amy and the entire Miss Northwestern crew and James and his volunteers at Miss Lake Erie, as well as to all the contestants! I have a FOX event, which I’m not sure what time I’ll get out of, but I’m going to try to make it to Miss Northwestern, even if I’m more fashionably late than normal!


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