Moments after being crowned the 2009 Miss Brainerd Lakes Saturday night, Lauren Johnson found herself surrounded by young girls clamoring for her autograph.
"It's a complete shock, I had no idea," Johnson said of being named Miss Brainerd Lakes. "I know pageant queens always say that but it's true. When they called my name, it was the most exciting feeling I've felt."
Lauren Johnson reacted after she was crowned 2009 Miss Brainerd Lakes on Saturday night at Tornstrom Auditorium. Brainerd Dispatch/ Kelly Humphrey » Purchase reprints of this photo.
Ten young women competed for the crown at the 2009 Miss Brainerd Lakes Scholarship Program on Saturday at Tornstrom Auditorium.
Johnson, 18, a 2009 Brainerd High School graduate, also was named the winner of the evening gown, personal interview and talent competitions at Saturday's pageant. She received a variety of gifts, including a $1,500 college scholarship.
Miss Brainerd Lakes contestant Mary Johnson sang "Only Hope" on Saturday. Brainerd Dispatch/ Kelly Humphrey » Purchase reprints of this photo.
First runner-up was Mary Petersen, who also won the swimsuit competition. She received a $700 scholarship. Second runner-up was Brianna Dornbusch, who also was named Miss Congeniality. She received a $500 scholarship.
Johnson, the daughter of Dave and Shelly Johnson of Brainerd, plans to attend the College of St. Scholastica in Duluth to pursue a degree in physical therapy. She has been playing piano for the last 11 years, and for the talent competition, she performed a variation of Edvard Greig's "Praeludium" from "Holberg Suite."
Johnson said she had told her older sister, Kristina, who competed in the Miss Brainerd Lakes pageant in 2005, that if Kristina would enter the pageant, she'd do it, too. Johnson said she's looking forward to experiencing new opportunities during her reign as Miss Brainerd Lakes.
Miss Brainerd Lakes contestant Brianna Dornbusch turned for the judges during the evening gown competition at Saturday's pageant. Dornbusch was named second runner-up and Miss Congeniality. Brainerd Dispatch/ Kelly Humphrey » Purchase reprints of this photo.
"I'm hoping to see a whole new world," Johnson said.
"We're going to have fun," Vicki Randall, pageant co-director, told Johnson after she was crowned. "I'm excited. She's a really good girl, a real sweetheart with an amazing talent."
Lauren Johnson, 18, who was later crowned 2009 Miss Brainerd Lakes, performed on the piano during the talent portion of the competition. Johnson, a 2009 Brainerd High School graduate, also was named the winner of the talent, personal interview and evening gown competitions. Brainerd Dispatch/ Kelly Humphrey » Purchase reprints of this photo.
Master of ceremonies was Bill Musel, who also served as pageant co-director. Emily Wyman, 2008 Miss Brainerd Lakes, performed a song she sang at the Miss Minnesota competition a week ago. The program also included vocal performances by newly crowned 2009 Miss Minnesota Brooke Kilgarriff and 2005 Miss Brainerd Lakes Allison Lordbock. Bailey Wachholz, 14, Nisswa, and Emma Hilgart, 16, Brainerd, performed their talent selections from the 2009 Miss Minnesota's Outstanding Teen program in which they competed in a week ago.
Other candidates at Saturday's pageant included Caitlin Cross, Chelsie Skorich, Hollie LeDoux, Mary Johnson, Samantha Dren, Katie Loeffelbein and Alexandra Ford.
JODIE TWEED may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 855-5858.
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