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Miss Sunrise Side Program moved to Alpena

October 5, 2011
By DIANE SPEER - News Lifestyles Editor , The Alpena News

After years of being held in Alcona County, the Miss Sunrise Side Scholarship Program is moving to Alpena.

The program , a local preliminary to the Miss Michigan and Miss America programs, will take place Nov. 12 at 4 p.m. in the Alpena High School Auditorium.

"We're trying to get a broader audience to come and see the show," said Cari Stenz, who serves as co-executive director along with Katie Lee. "Alpena is more heavily populated, so that's what we're hoping for."

Both Stenz and Lee are previous Miss Sunside Side winners. Lee took the title in 2003, while Stenz won the following year. The two are now committed to offering others girls the same opportunity to participate.

"It gave us a lot and we just want to be able to give that back to other ladies in the community," Stenz said.

An informational meeting for potential candidates and their families will be held this Sunday at 1 p.m. at the APlex. Girls unable to attend the meeting can still sign-up to participate prior to the start of rehearsals.

Besides the Miss Sunrise Side program, which is for young ladies between the ages of 17-23, a Miss Sunrise Side Teen program also will take place the same day. The teen program is for girls between the ages of 13-17.

Those eligible to compete in either program must live, work or attend school in Alpena, Alcona, Iosco, Montmorency, Oscoda and Presque Isle counties.

Stenz said she already has received a couple of applications from girls wanting to be a part of the Miss Sunrise Side program. Last year, a total of $3,000 in cash scholarships was given out locally, plus an additional $4,000 in-kind scholarship to Alpena Community College was presented to the winner.

"The primary benefit to participating is the scholarship money," Stenz said. "Contestants also work on their interview skills, their stage presence and public speaking.

The winner of the Miss Sunrise Side Teen program will receive an educational savings bond.

This year's Miss Sunrise Side winner will compete in June 2012 in the Miss Michigan Scholarship Pageant held each June in Muskegon, where over $50,000 in cash scholarships is available. The state program currently has 27 local programs that send contestants to the state program.

The winner of the Miss Michigan title then competes in the Miss America Pageant held in Las Vegas.

For more information about the upcoming local program, call 464-5427 or email



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