Hannah Hauserman crowned SnowFest! Queen 2009
Its good to be queen, for more reasons than one. This year the 28th annual SnowFest! Queen pageant raised more than $8,000 for local nonprofits and SnowFest. Benefitting nonprofits included: Tahoe Cross Country Ski Education Association, the Rotary Club of Tahoe City, American Association of University Women, the Kiwanis Club of Tahoe City, Adventure Risk Challenge, and North Tahoe Transportation Management Association. Five queen candidates represented their nonprofits and sold tickets to raise money and boost their chances at becoming Queen. Candidates were then judged on ticket sales, community involvement, an interview, essay and grade point average and were crowned at the SnowFest! opening ceremonies held on Feb. 27. This year, North Tahoe junior Hannah Hauserman was crowned SnowFest! Queen. Her court included Sierra Postler, Beverly Olivares, and Lily McDermott. In addition to the tiara, and the honor of being Queen, Hauserman received a $500 scholarship and each girl on her court received a $100 scholarship. Hauserman, who was actually born on SnowFest! opening night 16 years ago, was representing Tahoe Cross Country Ski Education Association, a program that offers free and discounted cross country ski programs to local children and students. Hannah approached us to sponsor her as a queen candidate because I think she saw the need and importance for the programs we offer and we can certainly use the money these days, said Valli Murnane, director of TCCSEA. Murnane said this year was the first the Association has had a SnowFest! queen candidate and the program was a big success for the nonprofit, raising more than $1,000 for the program. The money will go to buy new equipment and supplies for the three ski education programs the Association offers. The first is the Strider Glider After School program, which gives preschool through fifth-grade children the opportunity to enroll in an eight-session, eight-week instructional program and their very own rental equipment which they can take home throughout the duration of the program for only $85. The Association also sponsors the popular Free Skiing for Schools program, which allows teachers to take their entire class cross country skiing for free one day per month, and the Winter Discovery Program which is a winter science based program that operates out of the centers new yurt. We were able to sell a lot of tickets, Murnane said. And Hannah would come (to the center) every other day and would approach the mothers and the fathers dropping their kids off at the classes. She wore a homemade sash that she made herself. It was very creative. For Hannah, the highlight of her candidacy was getting involved. I loved having the opportunity to meet a lot of different people in the community, she said. And I loved being able to go out into the community and help the community by raising money for this nonprofit.I learned to open up to more people and I became more comfortable with myself. I also loved all the little girls who want to be just like me and that I am their role model. It was a great experience to have, and I recommend it for anyone who wants to try.The money raised in ticket sales was split evenly between each candidates nonprofit and SnowFest! Ruth Schnabel, executive director of SnowFest! expressed how pleased she was with the effort of this years queen candidates. SnowFest! really appreciates that these girls work so hard for the nonprofits they represent and for SnowFest!, she said. In addition to the $8,000 worth of tickets the girls sold as part of their run for queen, an additional $2,000 in ticket sales to benefit SnowFest! was sold during the two-week long SnowFest! festivities and at the grand finale post-parade party at Caliente!, where a happy couple from Tahoe City walked away with the coveted grand prize: $500, plus a four-night, five-day stay at the South Kona Hideaway Bed andamp; Breakfast.