Vikings crown their new queen

POULSBO — Dressed as a floured and somewhat frazzled baker, Alex Duchemin represented the finest Viking Fest has to offer. She later traded her chef’s hat for a crown.

The sanctuary of Christ Memorial Church in Poulsbo erupted with cheers as Duchemin’s name was announced as the 2002 Miss Viking Fest.

“It’s amazing. It’s exciting. I’m really proud to be representing Poulsbo,” Duchemin said following the pageant.

Duchemin also won awards for most ticket sales, highest GPA with a 3.9, and best speech.

Victoria Jones and Kelsey Erickson were crowned Viking Fest princesses.

Seven girls competed in the third annual competition held Saturday at the church. Erickson also won the Miss Congeniality title.

Lindsey Stockton won the director’s award for “coming out of her shell.”

The pageant, set “Down By the Bay,” featured an onstage interview, impromptu interview and speech portions.

The contestants were asked to give a two-minute speech promoting Viking Fest, a three-day celebration that centers around Norway’s Constitution Day May 17.

Jones, with a point and shoot camera around her neck and sun hat in her hand, explained the best the fest has to offer.

Erickson was one of two contestants to put her favorite parts of Viking Fest into verse.

“Join in the activities, partake in the festivities. Come one, come all, I guarantee you’ll have a ball,” she said.

Duchemin took her presentation out into the audience. She dressed as a baker from downtown Poulsbo (mustache included) and gave out Little Norway’s goodies to the crowd — including lefse.

“My personal favorite of the entire event is the people I meet,” she said.

Former Miss Viking Fests Janna Murray and Kristen Oas conducted the onstage interviews, which allowed the audience to get to know the girls.

“My passion in life is singing,” Jones said. She is a member of Northern Lights and recently played a nun in “The Sound of Music.” Jones is a 16-year-old junior at North Kitsap High School.

Erickson, a 15-year-old sophomore at North Kitsap High School, talked about her involvement with ASB, where she is a senator this year. She is also a recipient of the Presidential Academic Award of Excellence.

Duchemin, is a 17-year-old Bainbridge Island High School senior. She is involved in volleyball, church youth group and is an American Sign Language tutor. She got her first taste of sign language in fourth grade and took her first official class in seventh grade. Duchemin transferred to Bainbridge High School to take part in its sign language program.

Miss Viking Fest received a $1,000 scholarship and the two princesses each received a $500 scholarship. Their duties include promoting Viking Fest and Poulsbo at local and regional events.

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