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Old friends, new beginnings at pageant

BREMERTON — The lights of Paris, beautiful French music and a chorus line of the Poulsbo Vikings were among the sights at the 2003 Miss Poulsbo/Miss Kitsap Pageant.

The Miss Poulsbo event is in its 49th year, while organizers have just restarted the Miss Kitsap title that fizzled about 15 years ago. Saturday, 14 young women took the stage to compete for the two titles and wowed audiences with their grace, poise and unique talents.

Danielle Deitch of Poulsbo was chosen Miss Poulsbo 2003 and Bremerton resident Maria Knox was chosen Miss Kitsap 2003. The two will next represent Kitsap County in the Miss Washington Pageant in June.

The night was also an event to remember for Miss Poulsbo 2002 Kristen Eddings, who took the stage for the last time as Miss Poulsbo to hand over her title. She thanked more people than can be listed here, and received standing ovations for her performances, including “Let’s Face the Music and Dance,” which featured dancing from Eddings’ beloved Poulsbo Vikings.

“This is what this pageant does. It plucks these wonderful people from the sky and it teaches them to do anything they want to do,” commented Miss Poulsbo/Miss Kitsap organizer Michelle Wasson, noting that Eddings has grown and changed so much over the past year.

Wasson added she was confident the next titleholders would benefit just as much from the experience.

Besides the two titleholders, other awards presented included:

•Most Tickets Sold — Miss Poulsbo contestant Tamara Coultas

•People’s Choice Talent — Miss Kitsap contestant Maria Knox

•Miss Congeniality — Miss Kitsap contestant Maria Knox

•Scholastic Achievement — Miss Kitsap contestant Amy Stadshaug

•Living The Platform — Miss Kitsap contestant Kelly Skiff

•Presence and Poise in Evening Wear — Miss Kitsap contestant Maria Knox

•Lifestyle and Fitness in Swimsuit — Miss Kitsap contestant Maria Knox

•Community Achievement in Interview — Miss Poulsbo contestant Danielle Deitch

•Artistic Expression in Talent — Miss Kitsap contestant Maria Knox

Deitch’s second try nets big reward

Just weeks earlier, Danielle Deitch told a mock interview panel that she’d won the Miss Poulsbo swimsuit competition in 2002 and was hoping to excel in more areas at the 2003 pageant.

She didn’t win the swimsuit competition this year, but from the smile on her face as she was crowned Miss Poulsbo 2003, she didn’t seem to care.

Deitch, daughter of Denise and Dennis Deitch of Poulsbo, is the 49th young woman to wear the Miss Poulsbo crown. The 18-year-old is a 2002 North Kitsap High School graduate and an Olympic College freshman. She is a Mary Kay Independent Beauty Consultant and says she hopes to

someday become a Mary Kay National Sales Director.

The new Miss Poulsbo performed “The Minute Waltz” by Fredric Chopin on piano for her talent at Saturday’s competition.

Among her many activities, Deitch volunteers with the Senior Outreach Service and at Martha & Mary. Given this passion, she has chosen “arts and the elderly: bridging a generational gap” as her platform. Deitch said she hopes to get a local chapter of the New York based Elders Share the Arts organization started during her term as Miss Poulsbo.

“They have many programs that can bring elders and young people together that could be used in Poulsbo,” Deitch said of the program.

Besides winning the title of Miss Poulsbo, Deitch also received the Community Achievement in Interview Award, which netted her an additional $200 scholarship in addition to the $4,000 each of the titleholders received.

Diana Myrvang of Poulsbo was named first runner up in the Miss Poulsbo 2003 pageant.

Myrvang is the daughter of Lynn and Michael Myrvang of Poulsbo. She is a 2001 North Kitsap High School/running start graduate and a 2002 Olympic College graduate.

Myrvang hopes to attend the University of Washington and receive a bachelor’s degree in social services.

The 19-year-old sang Natalie Cole’s “It’s No Secret Anymore” for her talent.

Myrvang received a $1,000 scholarship for her achievement.

Knox shines in

contest for Miss Kitsap crown

As the Miss Kitsap Crown was placed on her head, Maria Knox turned to her mother and father, blew them a kiss and mouthed the words, “I love you.”

It was a moment that topped a night of triumphs for the 24-year-old Bremerton woman, who became the first Miss Kitsap titleholder in 15 years.

Knox, the daughter of Rosemary and Roderick Pruitt of Port Orchard, is a 1997 South Kitsap High School graduate and a part-time student at Olympic College.

The 24-year-old Group Health employee has plans to soon complete her degree in vocal performance and theatre.

Besides bowling over the audience with her rendition of “Quando Men Vo” from La Boheme for her talent (she won the people’s choice award for the performance), the new Miss Kitsap also made sure her platform also took center stage with her.

She has chosen “domestic violence awareness” for her platform. When she’s not performing with the Kitsap and Tacoma Operas, Knox spends much of her time lobbying in Olympia on domestic violence issues. She has also volunteered her time to raise money for the YMCA A.L.I.V.E. shelter of Kitsap County.

Knox said her passion for the issue arose because her mother, who she said during the pageant is one of her greatest heroes, is a domestic violence survivor.

She said she hopes to speak at local schools, as well as get accurate information distributed at churches, hospitals and other facilities about domestic violence prevention during her term.

“Education is very important,” Knox said. “Everyone needs to know they have a part to play in preventing domestic violence.”

Besides being crowned Miss Kitsap 2003, Knox also received the People’s Choice Talent, Miss Congeniality, Presence and Poise in Evening Wear, Lifestyle and Fitness in Swimsuit and Artistic Expression in Talent awards at the competition. These awards netted her $800 in scholarships in addition to the $4,000 scholarship both titleholders received.

Diosa Werner of Ollala, was chosen runner up in the Miss Kitsap 2003 competition.

Werner is the daughter of Prescila and Ronald Werner of Port Orchard, and a South Kitsap High School and running start student, graduating this spring.

The 18-year-old plans to pursue a degree in architecture and dance.

She performed a lyrical jazz dance to “Miracles Happen” from the Princess Diaries as her talent.

Werner received a $1,000 scholarship for her achievement.

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