Stevenson Spotlight 2.0 | A Show of Pageantry
Posted on 03/23/2016
Stevenson Spotlight 2.0

In this month's article from the Stevenson Spotlight 2.0, Autumn Miller reports from the second annual Mr. Spartan Pageant, held at SHS on March 17.            Who says the world of pageantry is just for females? No rule says a guy can’t rock formal wear just as well as anyone else. This point was made this past Thursday night at Stevenson when it held its 2nd annual Mr. Spartan Pageant, hosted by junior Jack Bushart and senior Mikaela Padgen. Out of all of the 13 juniors and seniors competing to take home the coveted crown, the judges decided that guy with the most beauty and grace was senior Noah Campbell.  Campbell set himself apart from the rest when he wooed the audience with his song dedicated to Mrs. Morrow and his thorough pepperoni pizza analysis during the question round.

        The entirety of the Mr. Spartan Pageant is put on by Stevenson’s Senate, who spend several weeks rallying interested upperclassmen males who don’t mind letting loose up in front of their peers. Students eager to participate have to fill out a sheet indicating facts about them and why they want to play a role in the event, along with things like who their escort will be, what college they plan on attending, and to what charity they’d like to donate if they won the crown. The whole point of the show is to raise money, and whoever wins the pageant gets all of the proceeds donated to a charity of their choice. It’s a great way to get the Stevenson student body involved within their community, all while enjoying themselves at the same time.

        Though Noah Campbell took home the big prize this year, the competition was incredibly tough right from the beginning. As the judging panel, which consisted of Mrs. Clark, Mrs. Gajor, Mrs. Kurkowski, Mrs. Mackson, Mrs. Siedlik, Mrs. Smith, and Mrs. Wojtyniak, watched all of the 13 contestants come out, they knew it was going to be a neck and neck competition. “In the beginning, I wanted to give them all perfect scores, but I knew I couldn’t do that. Ultimately, I had to see where their passion really lied,” commented Mrs. Gajor.

        All in all, the pageant consisted of four rounds. The first round, where the contestants were introduced while walking across their stage with their escort, was formal wear. Sitting in the audience, it was clear to see that all of the gentlemen looked especially dapper. Some standouts were senior Evan Anderle, who donned a bright red tux, and senior Kaden Kazee, who rocked a simple black-on-black outfit. After the 13 guys had presented themselves for the first time, they made their way backstage to prep for the second round, which was the talent portion. Overall, this was the part of the show that got the most laughs. Whether it was junior Ben Piccard sitting onstage while dramatically eating a banana or senior Ryan Burk channeling his inner Napoleon Dynamite, the entire crowd was buzzing with laughter. Once the contestants finished showing off their stuff, it was time for an elimination. The first round of guys to go were juniors Ben Piccard and Kyle Shannahan, and seniors Evan Anderle, Erik Doss, Alex Havens, and Alec Rotter. After this, the competition really picked up pace.

        The third round consisted of spirit wear and an explanation of the contestant’s charity. The crowd was moved by senior Alex Oquist’s personal and touching story behind his charity, the American Cancer Society, and were greatly informed after all of the facts that senior Brendan King provided about Gleaners. Though it was impressive to see the contestants be so well-educated about their charities, it was also quite a sight to see them dressed up in double blue and white tutu’s as well. Once the remaining eight contestants shared with the audience their charitable passions, it was time for the next elimination. Though they gave it all they had, seniors Jon DiDomenico, Brendan King, and Alec Rotter graced the stage one last time.

        The fourth and final round was the question round, where the remaining contestants were asked obscure questions made up by hosts Bushart and Padgen. Junior Billy Cosmo jumped right to his feet when questioned about what he’d do if he had only 15 minutes to live, along with his favorite sub sandwich; while senior Alex Oquist did better than anyone had a right to when asked “Bees are dying at an alarming rate. What?”. The five remaining beauties gave the crowd serious answers in reply to the wackiest questions, which made it all that more entertaining.

        Though they all charmed the crowd throughout the entire competition, there could only be one winner. After thorough and serious analysis from the judges on the five remaining (and not-so-serious) contestants, Bushart revealed to the eager audience the results- Ryan Burk taking fourth runner-up, Alex Oquist taking third, Billy Cosmo taking second, Kaden Kazee taking first, and Noah Campbell taking home the big prize. As he was passed down the crown and sash from Mr. Spartan 2015, Josh Lank, everyone could see the big smile plastered on his face as he heard the uproar of applause. “When I first heard my name, I didn’t really register that it was actually me,” Campbell noted, “but when I did, I was ecstatic. It was also really cool to receive the crown from Josh, whom I consider one of my best friends. It was just a really good day.”

        Mr. Spartan 2016 was, as expected, a hit. In total, Stevenson raised over $500, all of which was donated to Campbell’s charity, the American Red Cross. When I asked senior Sarah Miller, one of the chairs of the event, about what made the show that much of a success this year, she replied by saying, “All of the contestants were so willing and excited. The show can only be a hit if they provide, and they exceeded my expectations. I heard nothing but great things about the show, and that’s all because of them.” Stepping up to the plate, giving it their 110% and then some, and showing the world all of the talents they have? That seems to be the only way Spartans can ever do it.