Sunday, June 21, 2020


Sadly, the MS NEW JERSEY SENIOR AMERICA PAGEANT 2020 had to be cancelled earlier this month, as well as the ongoing activities of the NEW JERSEY CAMEO CLUB, due to the coronavirus pandemic.  The time honored Pageant which dates back to the 1970's, has given hundreds of ladies 60 and over, a once in a lifetime opportunity to win a crown and State title, just as their younger counterparts, and the chance go further to compete for a national title as well.  For many ladies, participation in this Pageant has been a life altering experience, that has changed the way they view themselves, and how they plan to live out the rest of their lives.  This year, the dreaded COVID-19 virus has robbed many of this chance.

During these hard times, 2 ladies have emerged, who have tried to keep the ladies together.  As they were highlighted in the April issue, Norma McGhie/MSNJSA'95, and daughter Sherri/MSNJSA'15 deserve continued mention.

 photos, courtesy Sherri McGhie
Norma continues to write poetry on themes which cover current events.  One poem, in particular, she adapted new words to a popular World War II song, "When the Lights Go On Again", sung by English songstress, Vera Lyn in 1942.  The song was also recorded in America by bandleader/singer, Vaughn Monroe.  Renditions by both artists can be heard on  By permission of the author, the following are Norma's lyrics:

When days are bright again all over the world,
When good health returns again all over the world,
When Quarantines and Distancing will no longer exist,
We'll shake hands again, and maybe kiss.

When days are bright again all over the world,
And life is normal again all over the world,
We'll cherish life's little things and our hearts will sing.
When days are bright again all over the world!

When everything's right again all over the world,
And our hearts are light again all over the world,
We'll congregate, celebrate and thank God in Heav'n above.
When days are bright again all over the world!

Note: Josephine Araniti/MSNJSA'07 tweaked the poem just a little to allow the words to flow easier with the melody.  Readers are encouraged to go to the You Tube website and sing with Lyn or Monroe, using the new lyrics.  For those more independent singers, who want more of a challenge, there are karaoke versions as well.

Kudos continue to Sherri McGhie/MSNJSA'15, for sending weekly email invitations to join her Zoom meetings.  More ladies are encouraged to join her and the "regulars", every Monday evening at 7:00 PM.

Another important happening was the meeting of the new board, on Tuesday, June 16th.  The MS NEW JERSEY SENIOR AMERICA PAGEANT has been re-established, and is now an official non-profit organization, with a slightly new name as: MS. NEW JERSEY SENIOR AMERICA, INC.

 photos, courtesy Mark Meade
Jo Ann Gordon/MSNJSA'08 and Vice President, hosted the board meeting at her home in Brick.  Behind the masks are: Johanne Santori/MSNJSA'06 and Chairperson of the Board; Terry Meade/Director of Pageants; Denise Mechan/Director of Communications & NJCC Showcase Coordinator; Carolyn Harden/MSNJSA'17 & MSSA'17, Director of Finance; and Becky  Orsatti/MSNJSA'10, Director of Research and Development. 

The new board also took the time to celebrate members' birthdays during the hiatus.  Terry's will be in July.  So, HAPPY BIRTHDAY to her and to all the "Sisters", who are having birthdays during the summer as well!

Here's wishing all the fabulous "ladies of elegance" a safe and happy summer.  If you have families nearby cherish every moment with them, even if you cannot physically embrace them.  For those ladies living alone, try not to despair.  Find ways to lift your spirit.  Here's one suggestion: try  reading/singing Norma's poem!