The former Miss Posen 2011 and the former Miss Presque Isle 2009 can add a new title to her name. Paige Lewandowski of Posen, already a two-time pageant title holder, was declared the 2013 Miss Sunrise Side following a three-hour competition held over the weekend at Alpena High School.
"It feels great," Lewandowski said after her most recent win. "I am excited and shocked, and I am really looking forward to representing the community."
The 19-year-old sophomore at Alpena Community College competed again nine other girls to take the title that now makes her eligible to participate in the Miss Michigan program, a preliminary competition to the Miss America Pageant. As this year's winner, Lewandowski received a $2,000 cash scholarship and a $4,000 Alpena Community College Scholarship.
News Photos by Diane Speer
ABOVE: Winners in this year’s Miss Sunrise Side Scholarship Pageant include, from left, Shelby Fransee, Community Service Award winner; Emilee Madison, first runner-up; Paige Lewandowski, 2013 Miss Sunrise Side winner and Talent Award winner; Kaylee LaFave, second runner-up and People’s Choice Award winner; and Alexis Hubert, Spirit Award winner.
Additionally, Lewandowski received the Talent Award worth an additional $100 cash scholarship. For her talent presentation, she performed a piano solo. A resident of Posen, she is the daughter of Mark and Denise Lewandowski.
The title of 2013 Miss Sunrise Side Outstanding Teen also was presented Saturday evening to 16-year-old Emily Hansen, who performed a song in sign language for her talent segment. A junior at Alpena High School, she is the daughter of Chris Ewing of Missouri and Jessica Hansen of Alpena.
There were a number of other winners from the event, including Emilee Madison as first runner-up and Kaylee LaFave as second runner-up. Madison, the 17-year-old daughter of Bryan Madison of Onaway and a senior at Onaway High School, received a $700 scholarship.
LaFave, the 18-year-old daughter of Darryl and Hope LaFave of Harrisville, was given a $300 scholarship. She was declared the People's Choice Award winner as well, an honor that was voted on by pageant attendees during intermission. She received a plaque for this recognition. LaFave currently is a sophomore at Lake Superior State University.
Two other Miss Sunrise Side awards were given out, including a $100 Community Service Award to Shelby Fransee and a Spirit Award to Alexis Hubert. Fransee is the 23-year-old daughter of Edward and Julie Fransee of Hale and a senior at Saginaw Valley State University. Hubert, a junior at ACC and Northwood University, is the 22-year-old daughter of Tom and Tammy Hubert of Hillman.
In the Miss Sunrise Side Outstanding Teen part of the pageant, 14-year-old Holly Fort received both the Talent and Spirit Awards. She is the daughter of Carla Campbell of Oscoda and a freshman at Oscoda High School. The People's Choice Award went to 15-year-old Heather Hentkowski, who is the daughter of Matthew and Laura Hentkowski of Rogers City. She is a sophomore at Rogers City High School.
Co-Executive Directors Cari Stenz and Katie Lee both expressed satisfaction with this year's scholarship pageant.
"I am very pleased with how everything went," said Stenz, who was the 2004 Miss Sunrise Side winner. "The girls all worked really hard. At the end, it's a breath of fresh air to see it all come together. All of the girls who participated were so genuine."
Lee agreed that the show went smoothly and included an outstanding group of participants.
"We had a fantastic show and a wonderful group of young ladies. I am excited for what the year holds for our winner." said Lee, who like Stenz is a former title holder. She won the Miss Sunrise Side Pageant in 2003.
While the evening saw a number of new winners, it also served as a farewell for the outgoing Miss Sunrise Side 2012, Alexandra Kramer of Lincoln, and Miss Sunrise Side Outstanding Teen 2012, Caitlin Borke. The two young women were on hand to crown the new winners, look back on their eventful year and perform their winning talent segments for the audience.
Linnea Hentkowski, Miss Sunrise Side Princess 2013, also participated in Saturday's program.