Sunday, October 18, 2009

REFLECTIONS OF THE MS SENIOR AMERICA PAGEANT 2009

Bernadette Dudek, MSNJSA 2009, dressed in a beautiful blue beaded gown, proved to be an impressive contestant in this year's MSSA Pageant, as she came in 3rd runner up. Here she is with MSNJSA State Pageant Director, Johanne Santori, who is equally dressed for the occasion, as she smiles with pride at Bernadette in appreciation for a job well done.
To the left of Queen Bernadette is Jo Ann Gordon, MSNJ 2008, and on the right, is MSNJSA State Pageant Director, Johanne Santori.

Bernadette with MSNJSA State Pageant Director, Johanne Santori, and to the left are Sandra Greco, MSSA 2003, and MSVASA 2009, Maureen Fitzpatrick Ribble.

The MS SENIOR AMERICA PAGEANT 2009 QUEEN'S COURT. Bernadette Dudek, MS NEW JERSEY, 3rd runner up, stands elegant and statuesque, next to reigning Queen Gayle King, from New York. Next to her is Maureen Fitzpatrick Ribble, MS VIRGINIA SA, 4th runner up. Next to Gayle is Barbara Travis, MS MISSISSIPPI SA, 1st runner up, and on the far left is Dianne Wilson, MS IDAHO SA, 2nd runner up.

Queen Bernadette proudly displays her plaque, as Josephine Araniti, MSNJSA2007 congratulates her on a job well done.

The year 2009 marked the 29th MS SENIOR AMERICA PAGEANT. As always, "elegant ladies"came from across the fruited plains to compete for the coveted title of MS SENIOR AMERICA. Sonia Rheinhardt once again produced a glamorous and world class production. In the opening number, the ladies of the class of 2009 were dressed in yellow, and stood stationary, as they gently moved their feathered fans to the song "Amapola", sung by Andrea Bocelli. Colonel Macalise was a funny master of ceremonies, and did well in "stretching the time", whenever it was needed. Past national queens, and the Queen's Choir provided most of the entertainment in between. Their performances were all wonderful.

The Class of 2009, was small, 30 States in all, including the US Virgin Islands. Because of this, there was only one Preliminary Pageant, in which all 30 contestants were seen. In spite of the very long afternoon, the audience remained patient. All the contestants did their best and each lady had her own special gift(s) that appealed to both the judges and the audience. The next day the top 10 finalists were chosen, and the battle for the winner was on.

Cheers and screams rang throughout the theater whenever Bernadette appeared, and when she made the top 10, everyone was happy. She looked every inch a queen, and performed flawlessly in every catagory. Then, the atmosphere turned electric, when she made the Queen's Court. Her family, friends, amateur audience score keepers, and New Jersey Cameo Club sisters, held their breath, in anticipation of the judges results. An audible show of disbelief was heard around the room, when she made 3rd runner up. It was obvious that Bernadette had captured the hearts of many people that day, but unfortunately, the judges decision was final.

We extend our congratulations to the winner, Gayle King, from New York, our new, MS SENIOR AMERICA 2009, and, we are also very proud of Bernadette Dudek, MS NEW JERSEY SENIOR AMERICA 2009, who made the QUEEN'S COURT, a very high and exhaulted place to be.

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