Miss Kitsap sweeps preliminary awards at Miss Washington

Hannah Orando named fourth runner-up in the statewide contest.

Miss Washington 2009 is not from Kitsap, but the county was well- represented at the pageant with Miss Kitsap 2009 Hannah Orando placing a mere five spots from the crown, which went to Miss Seattle Devanni Partridge.

"Well, we got close," Michele Wasson said. "Hannah needs a bit more life experience and she'll be ready to go."

The executive director of the Miss Poulsbo/Miss Kitsap Scholarship Organization, Wasson is no stranger to these pageants and the excitement that accompanies them.

Despite being named fourth runner-up at the pageant hosted at the Highline Performing Arts Center in Burien July 11, Orando, 18, will not walk away empty-handed. The overall purpose of the Miss pageants is to provide scholarship opportunities for girls. Prizes like fourth runner-up to Miss Washington, winning the preliminary swimsuit and preliminary evening gown portions and the Miss America Academic Achievement Award will net Orando $4,000 toward her education.

Miss Northwest Tonie Duchemin, 22 and from Poulsbo, won the Miss America Community Service Award, the Denise Vaughn Community Service Award, was named in the top 10 in the contest for Miss Washington and also received the People's Choice Award for a total of $2,550 in scholarships.

Miss Poulsbo Heidi Nicks, 22, picked up the Heart Healthy Award for $1,000.

Silverdale's Outstanding Teen Holly Wasson, who is the youngest contestant in the teen division at 13, won the Non-Finalist Interview Award and the Teen Ambassador Award for ad sales, both of which earned her $150 in jewelry from Betsey Johnson Jewelry and $50.

Kitsap County's Outstanding Teen Erica Runyan, a 15-year-old Silverdale resident, won the Preliminary Active Wear Award that gave her a $100 boost to her young pageant career. She was named Miss Spirit in 2008 at the National American Miss junior teen pageant in Bellevue, her first-ever pageant.

Miss Moses Lake and former Miss Kitsap 2008 Samantha Przybylek, 22, headed back to Seabeck having earned no scholarship money this time, but said she still had a great time.

The pageant will come again in 2010 and at least one of Wasson's girls, Orando, will be back to give it another go.

"Hannah looks amazing and is one step closer to the Miss America stage," Wasson said.

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