Saturday, May 31, 2014

Miss Minnesota Teen, Kayela's Farewell


After hearing my name called as the new 2013 National American Miss Minnesota Teen, I was in complete shock. Tears of joy streamed down my face. I could not believe that all of my hard work had finally paid off.

I started my year off with participating in many parades.  It was great to see all of the little girls faces light up as the “princess in the pretty dress” drove by. 

Throughout the year, I was given many opportunities to get involved in my community. In the fall I volunteered at various fundraisers such as, Feed my Starving Children, Project Bear Hugs, Dance against Violence, Dance for a Cause, Walk to end Alzheimer’s, and many more. I was able to speak to young boys and girls about following their dreams; I told them that I reached my dreams, and they could too! 

Later in the year, I was asked to do a feature in a four-page article in the Central Minnesota Women’s magazine. Through that I was able to share my NAM experience and future goals. 

Competing at nationals was an amazing experience. Words cannot describe how much fun I had. I met many wonderful girls who will be life-long friends. I was sad that nationals week had to come to an end, but I left with many memories.




My year has been full of glitter, smiles, and laughter, and I could not be more blessed to have had this experience.
I want to thank my parents for all of their love and support. I definitely could not have done any of this without your help.
I would like to thank the entire NAM staff for all of their hard work, help, and inspiration.



Finally, I want to give a BIG thank you to Faith Schway, Jackie Bordes, Lindsey Sauer, and Kayla Casciano for all of the wonderful advice you have given me throughout the year.

Dreams do come true, so don’t be afraid to dream big! 

Love, Kayela your 2013 Nation American Miss Minnesota Teen


Thursday, May 29, 2014

Miss Nevada Princess, Alexa's Farewell


What an amazing year it has been!!! 

Being crowned "MISS NEVADA PRINCESS" was just the beginning of so many wonderful opportunities for me to help my community and grow as an individual.


Starting in August with the "Backpack for Education" donation to Hunter Lake Elementary School.


In October I had the honor of meeting our state Governor Brian Sandoval and Judge Scott Freeman at a pancake breakfast before the "Nevada State Parade". Shortly after breakfast I participated in the parade and rode along with my fellow Royalty in celebration of Nevada's 149th birthday.The following week I was able to be part of the "Run for Education" where I handed out refreshments to the contestants. 


November's Nationals in Southern California was a truly amazing experience where I met so many girls who inspired me. 



I would like to thank my sponsor "Bonanza Produce" who has generously donated $47,000.00 in produce to the "Food Bank Of Northern Nevada" in my honor. In December I was also invited as a special guest to the Christmas Party at the "Empowerment Center" which is a halfway house for people in transition, after we donated two dozen turkeys and all the fixings for their Holiday dinner.  This coming Easter we will also be donating hams and colored eggs to the "Empowerment Center".

I am so grateful to my family and sponsor for helping me to achieve this exciting privilege with National American Miss this past year.  I hope that the next special girl who wins this title will support Nevada and enjoy her reign as much as I did....

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Minnesota Jr PreTeen Cover Girl, Jeralyn's Farewell

After being crowned 2013 NAMiss Jr. Preteen Minnesota State Cover Girl I traveled to Los Angeles California where I met with my Manager and agent there to audition for Fox International films for a role in a new movie. 



 Then after returning home to Minnesota in July I started my duties as Cover Girl with my Sister Queens and Cover Girls by going to Feed my Starving Children and packed food for other countries.  We packed 85 boxes for a total of 36,720 servings.



The Minnesota Queens and Cover Girls had a photo shoot which was a lot of fun.  Then we visited a Military Air base to donate personal hygiene products for soldiers over seas. The Nam girls rocked Sparkle night at the Minnesota Twins Game in July. Where we walked around the field before the game with all the royalty. 


In August I had the pleasure of meeting Erika Barlament The NAMiss 2012 Wisconsin Jr. Preteen Queen and helped out at the Wisconsin pageant as visiting royalty.

I have been volunteering with the Sisters of St. Joseph in St.Paul, Minnesota and helped them with a bake sale to benefit the Alzheimer's foundation. I enjoy making baked goods and serving to them at lunch time for their dessert.


I joined my sister queens in September at Carter's store in Woodbury for a toy drive for Children's hospital that is near and dear to my friend and sister Queen NAMiss Jr. Preteen Queen Natalie Engh.  After starting school, I donated the school supplies to a school with desperate need of supplies. We don't realize how lucky we have it until we see others that don't have anything.  


In October we had a great time riding in the Anoka Halloween Parade with all my namilly.  I have had quite a ride since being crowned NAMiss Cover Girl and I look forward to many more events before heading to the NAMiss Minnesota Pageant in June to compete again with friends that I made last year. I plan on walking in the Susan G. Komen Mother's Day walk at the Mall of America to fight to end Breast Cancer.  My Grandmother is a 10 Year survivor of Breast Cancer and My Great Grandmother was a 32 Year Survivor before her heart gave out and took her from us.  This is an organization that is important to me and I plan on continuing with it even after NAMiss.  

 
To the girls coming in this year I wish you all the best.  Enjoy every minute because it goes by faster than you think it will.  I would also like to thank all the queens and cover girls for a wonderful year.  To Stephanie NAMiss Minnesota Miss you were wonderful head Queen and friend thank you for all the appearances you set up and and keeping us going through our reign.  You are an awesome head Queen and an even better friend.  Kayela and Sophia we didn't get to spend a lot of time together but you will always be "Royalty" in my eyes.  To Savannah the Jr. Teen Cover Girl Thank you for your inspirational card for my birthday and the wonderful presents.  You have a gift for words and always make me feel special when we are together.  To Madelyn The Preteen Cover Girl and National Cover Miss I truly consider you a friend for life.  Thank you for all you have done for me in helping me learn what my role as a cover girl means.  You are a great example of what a cover girl is and I look up to you and think of you as extended family.  Your mom rocks too! To Tori, Natalie and Grace you girls are amazing and great friends.

To My Family and Friends, Especially my Mom and Grandma,Thank you for supporting me in everything I do.  You are always there for me no matter what. You take me to all my events and travel across the state just so I can do the things I need to do.  You fill me full of confidence and so much love I feel like I could burst. I would also like to Thank Connie Steckling the Owner of D & A Talent For Advertising support and picking me for your commercial "Scream for your Dream" that aired here in Minnesota

I am so blessed!

Love, Hugs and Kisses, Jeralyn

Monday, May 26, 2014

Miss Minnesota Preteen, Victoria Trittin's Farewell

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Being named the 2013 Miss Minnesota Preteen was a dream come true.  It has been an honor to be part of this amazing organization and the memories I have made will last a lifetime. Mom and Mike thanks for all your support I couldn’t have done it without you…and I will never be able to thank you enough for bringing me to all my appearances, including the opportunity to attend three other state pageants as visiting royalty.  To my four older brothers, thanks for supporting me this last year and for putting up with my constant talking about NAM!!!  Grandma and Grandpa a special thanks for coming to Nationals and for helping me with my dream of becoming royalty!


My reign has been filled with amazing opportunities.  One of my favorite events was being able to attend Sparkle Night at the Minnesota Twins game where we raised money for the Gillette Children’s Hospital.  We were all able to walk the bases and have our name and title announced this was a special treat and one of the first things we all got to do together as Minnesota queens!
My good friend Grace, who I met my first year at National American Miss organized a queens event, where queens from around the state of Minnesota came together at the Mall of America Build a Bear, for Project Bear Hugs.  Project Bear Hugs is an organization that takes donated bears and sends them to kids around the country who are impacted by natural disasters or other tragic events. It was so fun to spend the evening with my sister queens and all the other queens from around the state, building and assembling bears that would go to kids in need. 
I have been packing food for Feed My Starving Children for three years.  This last year, I helped pack over 100,000 meals for children and families who are malnourished in other parts of the world. This is an amazing organization that was started in Minnesota.  This year in addition to volunteering on my own and with other groups, I was able to attend an event to pack food with my sister queens where we helped back almost 37,000 meals!   


Nationals: Where to begin?  Nationals was one of the best experiences of my life!  Disney, the Hollywood Tour, Competing in optionals and all the themed practices were a blast…but the best part of the whole trip was the friendships I made that I know will last a lifetime.  To the other members of the preteen Fierce Four: Taylor (Illinois), Erika (Utah) and Hailey (Kansas) I LOVE you…thank you for making Nationals the best…and to the 7 Minnesota Preteens that came to Nationals way to represent Minnesota, you all did amazing, and a special shout out to Mady, Darcy and Jamie for being such great friends and supporters!!
To my successor:  This will be one of the best years of your life cherish the moments and the friends you make along the way and know that even without the crown or title, you can make a difference!
Thank  you to Breanne Maples our State Director and to the National American Miss Staff NAM Rocks!   
Your 2013 National American Miss Minnesota Preteen, 
Victoria Trittin

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Miss Missouri Pre Teen, Stevie Bisch's Farewell

“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are and to the best of your ability,” was my outlook for the pageant last year.   I was honored to be crowned your 2013 National American Miss Missouri Pre-Teen.  My year started off by donating the school supplies brought by the contestants at the state pageant.  I chose Kid Smart.  A wonderful program ensuring children and classrooms have the basic tools for learning at no cost to them.  I enjoyed getting a behind the scenes tour of their warehouse and how their operation works.  Next, I volunteered at the 2013 Special Olympics State Summer Games as a guest escort for Honored Guests Reception.  Later in the evening, I cheered on more than 2,000 Special Olympics athletes as they entered the Opening Ceremonies.  What energy, pride and excitement these athletes shared with “high fives” as they passed by me.

Before I knew it, it was time for National American Miss. My family and I were packed with all our 10 suitcases and ready for California. I was really happy to get a break from the cold Missouri weather.  I had so much fun at orientation, the 70’s party, all the rehearsals, the Hollywood tour, and of course my favorite, Disneyland. Even though I did not bring home the National title, I was awarded the 2013 National American Miss Spirit Award.  This award was voted by the pageant staff for the girl who was friendly, encouraging and fun to work with.  What a Super-duper honor.   I had SO much fun at Nationals.  I loved seeing old family friends and meeting new friends from all across the United States.


I would like to thank my Mom, Dad, Charlee, and Robbie for always being my loudest cheerleaders. I know when I hear the words “Sparkle Baby” that it is my proud family.  Nana, Grandma and Grandpa Bisch; thank you for always coming and supporting me in everything I choose to do.  My sister queens; I couldn’t ask for better sister queens, from cheering each other on at Nationals to our most recent fun at open calls.   I know we will always be there for each other through thick and thin. I see big things in all your futures.  Breanne and Ryan; thank you for investing so much time into each of your pageants and making girls' dreams come true.  You have taught me to dream big and make a difference in our world.  I truly thank you for this amazing opportunity.  I have also loved getting to know you guys and our year together.


National American Miss empowers young girls to set goals and accomplish them.  It has been such an extraordinary privilege to represent what dreams are all about.
 
Signing off for now,
Stevie Lyn Bisch, 

2013 National American Miss Missouri Pre-Teen

Friday, May 23, 2014

Missouri Pre Teen Cover Girl, Madison Dill's Farewell

I will never forget the moment that my name was called as the winner of the 2013-2014 National American Miss Missouri Cover Girl.  I was so excited and thrilled.   
When the pageant was over I was able to gather some boxes of school supplies and other items that were donated by all the contestants.  I came back home after the weekend and delivered the supplies and items to a great organization that help disabled children.  The organization is the Kenny Rogers Children's Center.  This center helps disabled children with different kinds of therapy. 


I had the privilege to do a lot of different things around my community during my reign, such as; helping children bake cookies at the Kenny Rogers Children's Center, walk in their annual walk-a-thon, and even ride in my town's annual parade, which is one of Missouri's largest parades - The Cotton Carnival Parade.  I was also able to help the Dexter Public Library raise money as I participated in a fashion show. 

My family and I also had the awesome opportunity to travel to California and represent the great state of Missouri.  I had the best time of my life.  In California I met some friends that I will cherish for life and most of all, I met some outstanding role models.

With the upcoming 2014 Missouri State Pageant quickly approaching, I have been able to help Miss Breanne and my sister queens with Open Calls and Pageant Preps.

As I give my crown up to my successor, I want the new queen to enjoy this time and use this opportunity to help as many people and organizations as possible, grow from this experience, and make a lot of new friends.  Don't forget to take lots of pictures!

It's a sad, but happy time as I give my crown up.  I want to thank God, my family, friends and local businesses.  Without all of you this would not have been possible.  Mom and Dad, thank your for always being there and believing in me and Dad, as a sister queen said, “Dad thanks for writing all the checks!”  Austin, what a great brother, always wanting to go with me and helping carry my stuff, and most of all giving me words of encouragement!

I am your 2013 National American Miss Missouri Pre-Teen Cover Girl, Madison Dill.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Miss Minnesota Princess, Grace Nester's Farewell


When I heard “and your new 2013 National American Miss Minnesota Princess Queen is Grace Nester!” a huge wave of excitement went through me…I was so overwhelmed with all my feelings it was hard to think straight.  I always wanted to be a princess and now I really was. There was no way at that time I could ever dream of what the next year would look like for me and my family. It has been an amazing journey that really does change your life and the lives of the people you touch along the way.

My first appearance was at Build-A-Bear Workshop with my sister queens to make teddy bears for the children who were victims in the Oklahoma Tornados.  It was also the day I lost my very first tooth!  Next, it was Feed My Starving Children where we packed 85 boxes containing 36,720 meals for families all over the world.  We also collected supplies for soldiers serving our country overseas as well as put together a Toy Drive at the Carter’s store benefiting the Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota.


Because I love animals so much I chose to work with Twin Cities Pet Rescue, they feed homeless pets and help them find foster parents until a family adopts them. I raised over $700 by selling my puppy shaped suckers at Woodbury Dance Center where I dance and other local events. One day our friends helped us by working a concession stand all day at the Cottage Grove Armory.  I also got up and spoke to over 100 small business owners at my daddy’s business event, it was a little scary at first but once I got up there it went great. 


Along with volunteering this summer, my sister queens and I did photo shoots, dinners, fashion shows and of course parades! I had no idea being in parades would be so much fun.  My favorite parade was the Woodbury Days Parade in my own hometown of Woodbury.  I was chosen to be the Community Grand Marshall. It was quite an honor to be chosen for such an important role.  I rode right behind the Mayor whom I also got to meet and take pictures with and my story was featured in local newspapers and TV.

The biggest thrill of all came when my family and I headed off to the National Competition in Hollywood, California.  There were so many friendly and encouraging people there…and going to Disney and the Hollywood tour was super fun plus it gave us girls a chance to enjoy all the new friends we were making. And Breanne, she is the best!  She is really good at her job.  She makes everything super fun and exciting. At Nationals I accomplished more than I ever imagined I could. I won 4th runner up for the Queen’s Title along with 1st place for Art Project, 1st Runner Up Talent, 1st Runner Up Most Promising Model, 2nd Runner Up Actress, 2nd Runner Up Spokesmodel, 2nd Runner Up Casual Wear Modeling, 3rdRunner Up Most Photogenic, 3rd Runner Up Best Thank You Note.  It was the best time ever!! And I never wanted it to stop.

It’s hard to believe the year is almost over.  National American Miss is the best thing that has ever happened to me.  I want to thank Kenn, Lani, Breanne and the rest of the NAMily staff for making this such a fun experience for me and for creating a program that has forever changed the lives of so many.  I could feel how much you truly care about all the girls and you want each of us to feel confident and special.  

To my beautiful sister queens……Stephanie, Kayela, Sofia, Tori and Natalie, you are the best sister queens a girl could ever have. Thank you for always taking care of me and making me feel special.  The times we’ve spent together I will cherish forever.  We have a special bond and friendship and I know you will always be part of my life. 

Thank you to my family, friends and sponsors who made all of this possible.  Miss Mary, thank you for all the time you spent helping me get prepared for nationals and then surprising by coming to California to watch me compete. Having you there made it all the more special.  You knew I could do it. Thank you for believing in me.

To my big sister Sara, you are my biggest cheerleader and best friend. Thank you for being such a positive role model.  A special thank you to Auntie Jo Jo and Chelsea for always being there for me. For coming to nationals with us and being part of this amazing journey in my life. Your love is a blessing.

Mom, everything I have done I have done with you by my side.  Thank you for always making sure my hair and outfits were perfect. For the hour, after hour, after hour you spent practicing with me and taking me everywhere I needed to go. And daddy, you are the most handsome escort and best daddy in the world and nobody makes me laugh like you do! Thank you mommy and daddy for allowing me to chase after my dreams, believing I can accomplish anything and supporting me every step of the way.  I love you.

But most of all I would like to thank God for lighting my path and giving me the courage to go to that open call. Without Him none of this would be possible. 

To my successor, there is no way to describe how much fun you are going to have or how you much you will grow over the next year. Never take anything for granted and enjoy every minute. Before you know it, you too will be writing your farewell…..

With lots of love,
Your 2013-2014 Miss Minnesota Princess Queen,
Grace Nester

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Miss Minnesota Junior Teen, Sofia Boda's Farewell

On June 2nd of 2013, my life changed forever. Never in my wildest dreams did I think that my name
would be called as the new Miss Minnesota Junior Teen!  I was truly in shock when I heard my name
announced …really, just take a look at the picture!

Once I gained my composure, it was time to start my duties as queen. I started my year off by donating the books and school supplies donated by the contestants to the Center for Experiential Learning at a local college. This organization works with children who do not speak English to develop literacy and writing skills. After this, it was an absolute whirlwind of events! I attended three parades, volunteered with my sister queens at Feed My Starving Children, opened the Mrs. Minnesota Pageant with the National Anthem, volunteered at the MusicLink Foundation and Project Bear Hugs, and attended eight local and out of state pageants as Miss Minnesota. Wow! But even with all of those fun events, my year was far from over.

Before I knew it, it was time to pack up and head to sunny California for Nationals! Nationals was absolutely the time of my life. I met so many wonderful state queens who I am truly honored to have as friends. We went to Disneyland, toured the famous streets of Hollywood, had Thanksgiving dinner together, and so much more! At Nationals, I was so honored to receive third runner-up in the Actress competition, and I took home the title of 2013-2014 Jr. Teen National Talent Winner for my performance of Juliet’s Waltz from the opera Romeo and Juliet! I also won Most Ticket Sales and a spirit stick for being positive and energetic during our rehearsals. This was an experience I will never ever forget, and I am still so proud of each and every girl who competed that week.

Before I give up my title, I have so many people to thank! To my family, thank you so much for facilitating my year as queen. I truly cannot thank you enough for the undying support and countless hours you all have spent making sure everything was perfect. And Mom, even though we sometimes didn’t agree on this, you ALWAYS picked out the best outfits for me! To Faith, Carl, Bessie, Alla, Nicole, Kreisson, Michelle, and Chrissy, thank you for being the best pageant “A-Team” to ever exist! From interview skills to hairstyles, you never failed to go the extra mile to help me do my best. To my lovely sister queens, I had a wonderful time spending the year with you all. You have such wonderful talents and I can’t wait to see what you do with them throughout your lifetime! We have truly become a family over this year, and I love you all very much! Last, but definitely not least, thank you to my State Directors, royalty coordinators, and NAM staff! You work so hard to make sure we all are on schedule, supporting us during events, and making us laugh! You have all been a blessing to me during this year. Even though my year is almost over, I’m sure you haven’t seen the last of me yet! J

Last, to this year’s contestants, I am so proud of you all. You are about to do something truly amazing! You and I are so lucky to have opportunities like this to showcase our skills and become stellar young women. Appreciate everything about pageant weekend, because there are millions of girls across the world that would never have this chance.  Include everyone, perform to the best of your ability, make friends, and let your light shine brightly, and I assure you that you will be happy with how you do. Remember that you have been CHOSEN to be here, and it is such a great honor to be a State Finalist, no matter what happens! You are ALL winners! Finally, to my successor, you have been given the opportunity of a lifetime. During this year, you will be able to do so many new things, so never let fear of the unknown stop you from trying something new! Your year is what you make it, so head into your community and make a difference. Also, I challenge you not just to be a girl with a crown, but to be a titleholder. You represent the wonderful state of Minnesota, so it is very important to always exude positivity and have an aura of professionalism in everything you do. Remember, there is always going to be a little girl looking up to you and wanting to be just like you when she grows up! Take every picture, sign every autograph, and jump at every chance to be a friend to someone who needs it, because your year will absolutely fly by! I have been so honored to represent Minnesota for a year, and I will never forget this experience. Thank you NAM for shaping who I am today!

Lots and lots of love,

Sofia Boda, your 2013 Miss Minnesota Jr. Teen J

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Miss Arizona Jr Pre Teen, Mariah's Farewell


  
Mariah's NAM journey began with 3 simple words....I LOVE IT!
  
Early 2010 we received an invitation to possibly be a participant in the NAM Pageant. As a true dance mom I was willing to try anything once for my outgoing and energetic 6yr old daughter. 

 
We did not do anything outlandish or extraordinary, we even borrowed the little dress Mariah used for formal wear.  Having never done a pageant before we were overjoyed when our little sunshine placed 2nd Runner-Up in Princess. 
  
Fast Foward 4 years and 3 NAM Pageants later and here she is NAM Jr. Pre-Teen Arizona 2013-14 Mariah Hall! Mariah has never given up. She has always put her best foot  forward. 
Mariah cheered for whoever won the crown. I taught her to be happy because one day if you win, others will be happy for you too. She always enjoyed the girls and has made tons of friends. Mariah has won 6 Optional Categories and 2 Prized Spirit Sticks at Nationals.

This year her reign as Jr. Pre-Teen Queen has been magical full of joy and happiness. She has the best Queen sisters who have been great peers and role models for her. They have fed the poor, and packed gift boxes for underprivileged children. The parades they marched in have been a blast. Mariah is a true NAM girl. NAM girls do not give up. NAM girls bring out the best in everyone. 

 
Let's go back 4 years after that first NAM Pageant, I was so ready to close this chapter of Pageants and cross it off our list. I thought I better ask Mariah what she felt. So when I asked if she had fun at the pageant and wanted to do it again, she shook her head yes and said.....I LOVE IT!
(The rest is history)

Check out a video Mariah made of her year: