35th Swiss Wine Festival kicks off tonight with Teen Princess Pageant

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After months of planning, the 35th Swiss Wine Festival begins its four-day run tonight (Thursday) in the Paul Ogle Riverfront Park.

Highlighting tonight’s events will be the crowning of the Edelweiss Teen Princess, with 15 contestants vying for the title. The winner will join Princess Sydney Pike and Prince Mat Deaton in reigning over this year’s festival.

The Edelweiss Teen Princess Pageant will be held at the Main Stage, and will begin at 7:45 p.m.

Here’s a look at this year’s contestants:

– ELIZABETH JANE ABBOTT: Beth Abbott is a sophomore at Switzerland County High School, and is the daughter of Tim and Jenny Abbott of Parks Ridge. She is being sponsored in the pageant by Pam’s Scissor Talk.

She is a member of the varsity cross country and track teams; plays jayvee basketball; and is also involved in FFA and the Switzerland County 4-H program, including being a member of the Junior Leaders.

Following graduation she plans on attending Iowa State College and majoring in meteorology, and one day hopes to become a storm chaser.

– ASHLEY SUZANNE BOVARD: Ashley Bovard is the daughter of Ernest and Suzi Bovard of near East Enterprise, and is being sponsored in the pageant by Swiss Caps. She is a sophomore at Switzerland County High School.

She is involved in the FFA program, where she was the second runner up for Star Greenhand; and is a member of the pep club. She is a manager for the boys track team; and is a member of the National Junior Honor Society.

After she graduates from high school, she plans on studying to be a physician’s assistant, or something in the medical field.

– LACI ELIZABETH DAUGHERTY: Laci Daugherty is a sophomore at Switzerland County High School, and is being sponsored in this year’ pageant by Danner’s Hardware. She is the daughter of Rick and Debbi Daugherty of Vevay.

She is a member of the Key Club, FFA, pep club, Junior Historical Society, and show choir. She is a jayvee cheerleader, and participates in volleyball, golf, and track. She is also a member of the dance team. She is the 2006 Student Idol winner, and is a member of Spring Branch Baptist Church.

Following graduation she would like to attend Indiana University and study to become a pediatrician or a pharmacist.

– RACHEL LYNN GURLEY: Rachel Gurley is being sponsored in the pageant by Quality Homes of Madison, and is a sophomore at Switzerland County High School. She is the daughter of James Gurley and Jenny Gurley of Pleasant.

She has earned inclusion on the A-B Honor Roll; is a member of student council; and is a two year member of the flag corps. She is also a member of the dance team; and is a member of the Switzerland County FFA.

After she finishes high school, she plans on going to medical school to become a registered nurse.

– LESLIE NICOLE JOHNSON: Leslie Johnson is the daughter of Dale and Diana Johnson of near Florence. She is a freshman at Switzerland County High School, and is being sponsored in the pageant by Tailwind Farms.

She is a member of the National Junior Honor Society; and is also a member of New Liberty Baptist Church. She is a member of the 4-H Junior Leaders; is a 21st Century Scholar; and is a member of the Center Square Champs 4-H club.

After graduation she plans on attending college and study to have a career as a physical therapist or in pediatrics.

– BAYLIE DANIELLE JUDY: Baylie Judy is a freshman at Switzerland County High School, and is being sponsored in the pageant by Tolbert’s Carwash. She is the daughter of Robert and Shannon Judy of near Fairview.

She is a member of the National Junior Honor Society; voted by her classmates has having the Most School Spirit; and is captain of the freshman cheerleading squad. She has also earned a spot on the All A Honor Roll.

After she graduates from high school, she would like to attend Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology and become an engineer.

– BJ NICOLE KNAUS: BJ Knaus is being sponsored in the pageant by the Kiwanis Club of Vevay. She is a junior at Switzerland County High School, and is the daughter of Dennis and Loretta Knaus of Popcorn Ridge.

She is the captain of the junior varsity cheerleading squad; is a three-year member of the French Club; and is a member of the pep club and the Business Professionals of America. She is also a member of the yearbook staff.

After graduation she would someday like to own her own restaurant; and will attend college to study culinary arts and business management.

– EMILY CHRISTINE LANMAN: Emily Lanman is a sophomore at Switzerland County High School; and is the daughter of Pat and Jacquita Lanman of Vevay. She is being sponsored in this year’s pageant by State Farm Insurance.

She was the first runner up in the 2005 Edelweiss Teen Princess pageant; and is a jayvee cheerleader. She is a member of the FFA, where she serves as an officer; and is on the golf team. She is a member of Olive Branch Baptist Church; and the National Junior Honor Society.

Following graduation she plans on pursuing a career in child care or photography.

– ALYSSA DANIELLE LEAP: Alyssa Leap is the daughter of Roy and Julie Leap of Vevay; and is a freshman at Switzerland County High School. She is being sponsored this year by Leap’s Construction.

She is a member of the National Junior Honor Society; and earned the “Most Points Scored” award in middle school soccer. She is currently a junior varsity cheerleader.

Her career ambition is to become a pediatrician or some other type of doctor. Her other career possibilities include studying business management, marketing, or physical therapy.

– MORGAN ELIZABETH NAY: Morgan Nay is a sophomore at Switzerland County High School, and is being sponsored in the pageant by Edelweiss Floral. She is the daughter of Rodney and Sally Nay of Vevay.

She has earned inclusion on the A-B Honor Roll; is a member of the FFA chapter; Junior Historical Society; pep club; French Club; and National Junior Honor Society. She is a jayvee cheerleader; a member of 4-H; and the high school choir.

After graduating from high school, she plans on pursuing a career in the medical field.

– JAMIE RENEE PHIPPS: Jamie Phipps is the daughter of Jim and Shannon Phipps of near Fairview. She is being sponsored in the pageant by the Switzerland County Public Library; and is a freshman at Switzerland County High School.

She is a member of the National Junior Honor Society; the 4-H program, where she is a member of the Junior Leaders; and is a member of St. Peter’s Lutheran Church.

Following graduation she would like to attend college and study to become an author or an English teacher.

– KAITLYNN MICHELLE RAYLS: Katie Rayls is a sophomore at Switzerland County High School, and is being sponsored in this year’s pageant by Brown’s Farm Implement. She is the granddaughter of Darrell and Jeannie Thurnall of near Moorefield.

She was the third runner up in the 2005 Edelweiss Teen Princess pageant; and is a member of the FFA; prayer group; the Fellowship of Christian Athletes; and is a member of Spring Branch Baptist Church. She has earned awards in basketball; and was voted “Most Athletic” by her eighth grade class.

Her career ambition is to play college basketball following high school; and pursue a career as an athletic trainer.

– DANIELLE LEE ROSE: Danielle Rose is the daughter of Ginny Holt of Patriot and Danny Rose; and is a sophomore at Switzerland County High School. She is being sponsored in the pageant by Fred Black Enterprises.

She has earned inclusion on the A-B Honor Roll; is a member of the National Junior Honor Society; and has been a cheerleader for six years. She is currently a member of the jayvee cheerleading squad.

After graduation she would like to attend Miami University to study cosmetology and hopes to be a beautician at a major salon one day.

– ERICA NOEL THIEN: Erica Thien is a freshman at Switzerland County High School; and is the daughter of Eric and Michele Thien of near Patriot. She is being sponsored in the pageant by Underwater Construction and Maintenance.

She is a member of the National Junior Honor Society; and has also earned inclusion on the All A Honor Roll while in school. She has been a cheerleader; and involved in gymnastics.

Following graduation from high school, she plans on attending college to study to become a pediatrician.

– BRIDGETT MARIE WASHNOCK: Bridgett Washnock is being sponsored in the pageant by Valentine Realty; and is the daughter of Larry and Paula Washnock of near East Enterprise. She is a sophomore at Switzerland County High School.

She is a jayvee cheerleader; is involved in gymnastics; and is a member of the flag corps. She is on the dance team; student council; volleyball team; and is a member of the Switzerland County 4-H program.

Following graduation she plans on attending college to pursue a career in fashion merchandising.