Miss Poulsbo/Miss Kitsap contestants to give it their pageantry best

The Miss Poulsbo/Miss Kitsap pageant was moved to January this year, so it was only fitting to name it “New Year’s in New York.”

The glitz and glamour comes to the Performing Arts Center at Bremerton High School at 6 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 10.

With six girls vying for the Miss Poulsbo crown and seven hoping to win the Miss Kitsap title, pageant executive director Michele Wasson promises a night filled with talent.

“It’s a great group of girls,” she said. “The ladies go through a lot to get to where we are now (in preparing for the competition). It’s hard work.”

The night will be hosted by Miss Poulsbo 2008 Amy Stadshaug, Miss Kitsap 2008 Samantha Przybylek and Miss Poulsbo 2001 Jeana Ostheller Halversen.

The competition is typically in March, but was moved to January for a number of reasons, according to Wasson. The main reason is to allow more preparation time for the Miss Washington pageant in July.

“We moved it up so we can work more with the titleholders,” Wasson said. “It’s a lot of work to get ready for Miss Washington. It’ll be nice to have that extra time.”

Having the competition this month also allows for the contestants to prepare during their winter break from high school or college. Although the girls have had the time off from school to prepare for the big night, the recent snow made getting to rehearsals challenging.

“They’re doing well; it’s been a little crazy with the snow,” Wasson said.

One rehearsal was cancelled which meant two in a row, but the group worked through it, regardless, she added.

This year, more than $21,000 in scholarship money is up for grabs. The new Miss Poulsbo and Miss Kitsap will each receive $4,000 scholarships.

“With people not doing that well (financially), that’s huge,” Wasson said. “We’re so appreciative of our supportive community here ... It’s been tough for a lot of our donors.”

Olympic College has been a constant supporter of the Miss Poulsbo/Miss Kitsap organization, donating nearly $15,000 in scholarship money in the last five years.

“No one has a community college like them,” Wasson said.

With Stadshaug and Przybylek passing on their respective crowns next Saturday, it’s bittersweet for Wasson who said while she looks forward to working with this year’s titleholders, she will miss the two she has worked so closely with in the past year.

“I couldn’t have asked for a better team,” Wasson said of Przybylek and Stadshaug. “The next titleholders have some big stilettos to fill.”

Tickets are still available for Saturday’s event and are $18 for adults and $15 for children 12 and younger and seniors. After-party tickets are $10 per person. Festival seating tickets are available at Nilsen’s Appliance Center in Silverdale next to Target, Dahlquist’s Fine Jewelry in Poulsbo or from pageant contestants. For reserved seating tickets, contact Wasson at (360) 689-3553 or e-mail

Miss Kitsap


Angela Rose

17-year-old Klahowya Secondary School senior

Platform issue: 4-H youth development program

Talent: Classical vocal: “Think of Me” from “The Phantom of the Opera”

Scholastic/Career ambition: Obtain an associate’s degree from Olympic College and then transfer to a four-year university to become a veterinary technician, earning a master’s in equine veterinary services, specializing in reproduction and skin reconstruction.

Meika Bumbalough

17-year-old Klahowya Secondary School senior

Platform issue: Youth suicide awareness

Talent: Sign language to “Colors of the Wind” from “Pocahontas”

Scholastic/Career ambition: Obtain a bachelor’s degree in sports management and sports marketing/managing or work in the marketing side of professional sports.

Cherisse Martinelli

17-year-old Klahowya Secondary School senior

Platform issue: Musical therapy

Talent: Broadway Vocal: “Don’t Rain on My Parade” from “Funny Girl”

Scholastic/Career ambition: Obtain a bachelor’s degree in music education and become a high school choir teacher or musical theater actress.

Valerie Mellon

17-year-old Central Kitsap High School senior

Platform issue: Autism awareness

Talent: Comedic contemporary monologue — “Star Spangled Girl,” Neil Simon

Scholastic/Career ambition: Obtain two bachelor’s degrees in broadcast journalism and theater arts, afterwards, work for a major news station as a journalist, or become an actor.

Hannah Orando

17-year-old Central Kitsap High School senior

Platform issue: Promoting health and wellness in youth

Talent: Classical vocal: “O Mio Babbino Caro”

Scholastic/Career ambition: Obtain a master’s degree in neuroscience. Spend career researching the brain; specifically pre-memory childhood development.

Alicia Orkiolla

17-year-old Klahowya Secondary School senior and Running Start student at Olympic College

Platform issue: Kitsap Humane Society

Talent: Flute solo: “My Favorite Things” from “The Sound of Music”

Scholastic/Career ambition: Obtain a bachelor’s degree in nursing from a university and work in the emergency room of a hospital in Seattle or other major city.

Rachelle Jensen

18-year-old Olympic College student; 2007 South Kitsap High School grad

Platform issue: Empowering women

Talent: Contemporary vocal: “Finally” by Fergie

Scholastic/Career ambition: Earn a master’s degree in biology and travel the world studying animals and promoting conservation.

Miss Poulsbo


Taylor Wall

18-year-old Kingston High School senior

Platform issue: Breast cancer awareness — funding the cure

Talent: Vocal performance of Taylor Swift’s “Tim McGraw”

Scholastic/Career ambition: Obtain a bachelor’s degree in education and teach second grade.

Jenna Uher

20-year-old Olympic College, Western Washington University student; 2006 North Kitsap High School grad

Platform issue: Volunteerism in schools

Talent: Contemporary vocal: “Black Horse and the Cherry Tree” by KT Tunstall

Scholastic/Career ambition: Obtain a master’s degree in nursing and work in an emergency room as a registered nurse.

Kelli Weedin

18-year-old Olympic College student; 2007 North Kitsap High School

Platform issue: Involving youth in the community

Talent: Comedic monologue: “The Other Step-Sister”

Scholastic/Career ambition: Obtain a bachelor’s degree in event and sport management and work for a nonprofit organization as an event manager.

Heidi Nicks

22-year-old Seattle University student, majoring in nursing; 2005 North Kitsap High School grad

Platform issue: Disease prevention through healthy lifestyles

Talent: Jazz vocal: “Someone to Watch Over Me” by Etta James

Scholastic/Career ambition: Obtain a doctorate’s degree in nursing and practice healthcare and disease prevention with an international nonprofit organization in underserved communities.

Erika Scott

18-year-old North Kitsap High School senior

Platform issue: sexual assault awareness and education

Talent: Flute solo: “Villanella” by Paul Koepke

Scholastic/Career ambition: Earn a bachelor’s degree in neurobiology, focusing on research.

Myriah Riedel

17-year-old senior at The Trillium School

Platform issue: Investing in the arts

Talent: Broadway vocal: “Someone Like You” from “Jekyll and Hyde”

Scholastic/Career ambition: Major in performance theater and minor in musical theater and have a successful career on the Broadway stage.

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