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Junior girls invited to take part in scholarship program

Calling all high school junior girls from Craigmont, Nezperce, Cottonwood and Grangeville: Get your acts together. Literally.

With the theme of “School’s Out for the Summer,” the Distinguished Young Woman of the Camas Prairie program (formerly Junior Miss) is being rejuvenated.

Kim Johnson and her mother, Sue Johnson, both of Grangeville, are bringing the program back to the area.

“We’re unsure when the last Junior Miss was held in Grangeville,” Kim said, but it may have been nearly 20 years ago. “We are very excited to get this going because it is an amazing opportunity for young women.”

Kim participated in the program in Kenai, Alaska, in the ‘80s and was first runner-up in her community. Following that, Sue volunteered with the program for years.

Girls who are currently juniors in home, public and private schools in Craigmont, Nezperce, Cottonwood and Grangeville are eligible for this scholarship program that includes fitness, scholastic, interview, talent and poise portions.

The first meeting is set for Friday, April 11, Super 8 Motel conference room, and the final program will be Grangeville Elementary Middle School’s multi-purpose room Saturday, June 14, both at 7 p.m.

“We really want all junior girls in these communities to come out for this,” Sue encouraged.

“It’s definitely not for any one ‘type’ of girls. This is not a beauty pageant – it’s for all girls,” Kim added.

Young women who do not feel they have an identifiable talent need not worry, the Johnsons assured.

“I’ve seen such a variety of talents – poetry reading, singing, instrument playing, juggling, dancing, art – there’s just an endless amount of possibilities,” Sue said.

The scholarship program will offer an array of winners in a variety of categories including $500 first-place and $100 for runner-up.

“Of course, money for college is important, but it’s also the experiences – it’s life changing and important,” Kim said. “The interview process is a life skill that can be used forever.”

Businesses, organizations and individuals wishing to donate to help cover expenses (school rental, franchise fee, insurance and decorations) can call the Johnsons.

Girls interested should attend the April 11 meeting or call if they are unable to make that date. All girls participating need to register on-line (no fee) and be prepared to meet prior to the June 14 final to go over program routines.

Community members wishing to donate dresses (knee-length, semiformal, no long dresses) should also call the Johnsons.

“Income should not be a deterrent to participation,” Kim emphasized. “We will help find dresses, outfits – whatever is required. We just want all types of girls to join in and help kick this off and make it an anticipated yearly event.”

For questions call Kim at 750-6460 or Sue at 413-8428.

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