Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Miss Minnesota 2016

For the second consecutive year I had the distinct honor of emceeing the Miss Minnesota Scholarship Pageant. And for the second consecutive year I am thrilled with whom the judges selected to represent my state at Miss America.

I specifically recall Madeline Van Ert competing last year in the 2015 state pageant. As a mere 18-year old, Madeline showed incredible poise, heart and confidence while competing.

During the talent portion of the competition, I am typically standing off stage. What stood out to me about Madeline's 2015 performance (she played piano to the John Lennon tune Imagine while also singing the song) is when she departed the stage upon finishing her talent piece. While backstage, she burst into tears, not out of sorrow but rather pure emotion. She put her whole heart into that phase of competition, leaving nothing on the table. As a result, Madeline ended up finishing 3rd overall last year. When I called her name as "second runner-up," she looked up with this huge smile on her face as if to say "YESSS!!!" It was that display of heart and a grateful attitude which galvanized my belief that she'd be a legit contender if indeed she chose to compete again.

Sure enough, Madeline competed again in 2016. And once again she gave it all she had. But this time it resulted in her being crowned Miss Minnesota, a well earned honor among an incredibly talented class.

Congrats, Madeline!


No comments: