Oh what a night! What a weekend! Not only was it my birthday Saturday but it was also the 2013 Mrs. Washington America Pageant weekend in Olympia, Wa.
(A little back story: After the 2012 pageant I was honored to move from being a contestant to become the Executive Assistant to the State Director, Pamela Curnel. This position suits me well! I am able to feed my creative side, help others, and meet some pretty amazing people! I am so very thankful to have been welcomed in not only by Pam and her family/friends, but by her pageant family as well. This is a remarkable group of people that bless me daily!)
What a celebration! I was blessed to share my birthday with not only my husband and two beautiful daughters but with the incredible pageant staff/family/friends, 23 amazing contestants, a celebrity judges panel, 19 former Mrs. Washington America’s, a handful of friends from Moses Lake, and well - EVERYONE that attended the pageant! Yes, you read it correctly - EVERYONE in the theater (more on that in a moment).
My birthday celebration began Friday night after interviews at the contestant gift exchange. I was surprised by the contestants and pageant staff/family/friends singing "Happy Birthday" to me and having not one, but two cakes there to indulge in the night before the pageant!! I thought it was so thoughtful for them to take time out of their weekend to acknowledge my birthday. So, after Friday night, I checked my birthday off my list and focused on the pageant ahead.
What an amazing pageant it was! We celebrated Pam’s 20th Year as the Mrs. Washington America State Director with a breath taking show!
- the theater, Washington Center for the Performing Arts
- the backdrop
- the celebrity panel of judges:
- Gene Juarez - founder and CEO of Gene Juarez Salons and Spas
- Rita Corwin - Mrs. Alaska America State Director
- Faith Hemmerling - Mrs. Canada 2003
- Mark Nudelman - President & CEO of The Hope Heart Institute, our pageant charity
- April Lufrui - Mrs. America 2011/Mrs. World 2012
- DeShaunda Hudson - COO of Swan Employer Services; Alaska’s largest Human Resources Outsourcing Company.
- wonderfully talented hosts/emcees for the evening: Mark and Debbie Roeber
- The beautiful Mrs. Washington 2012, Jessica Riggs, a queen who has been a selfless in her reign “Making a Difference” not only in communities but in those lives she has been a part of as well!
And oh so much more! Truly a first class production by Pam, as always! Nothing but the best will do.
The competition was fierce! The class of 2013 was filled with such wonderful women! I am very thankful that I was neither a contestant or a judge! Each contestant is so individual and offering something so different than the other. Ladies, you should be so very proud of yourselves and your journeys! You are each AMAZING! Seriously! You guys ROCKED it!! It has been my honor and pleasure to share in this year with you!
During the awards portion of the evening, I was awarded the “Staff Volunteer of the Year Award 2013” and acknowledged on stage. HUGE surprise! I am so honored and so touched to receive such a prestigious award. As, I was walking off stage Mark and Debbie, our emcees, shared that it was also my birthday...so I was called back on stage where I received an overwhelming “Happy Birthday” chorus from everyone in the theater. How often in ones life does that happen?!? WOW! Again, I was humbled.
I’m not sure anyone, other than my husband, realizes how much just a small token of appreciation means to me. Receiving this award, others taking that time to personally acknowledge me...I am overwhelmed. From the bottom of my heart - thank you!
To our new Mrs. Washington America 2013, Amy Clark - congratulations sweetie! I look forward to the amazing year ahead! I am excited to be able to participate in moments of your new journey!
Thank you to not only those at the pageant, but friends and family that sent me birthday love via Facebook, cards, texts, flowers, etc!! This birthday was definitely a once in a lifetime event!