Farmington Hills native to vie for Miss Oakland County title

Farmington Hills native Grace Newlin will compete July 14 in the Miss Oakland County pageant, which moves this year from the Costick Center in Farmington Hills to the campus of Oakland University.

2017 Miss Oakland County Emma Seidel will crown her successor in Dodge Hall, located at 118 Library Drive, Rochester. The pageant begins at 6:30 p.m. Newlin, who attends Henry Ford College, will give a vocal performance. Her platform is “Keep the Beat: Heart Disease Education.”

Jon Aldred for Farmington Hills City Council
Miss Sunrise Side pageant winners
Grace Newlin, second from right, will compete July 14 in the Miss Oakland County pageant. She’s pictured at a  November pageant with (from left) Grace Murphy, Emily Birgy, Miss Sunrise Side 2017 Ashley Flowers, and Jenna Holt. (Photo by Amy Elisabeth Photography)

Nine contestants will compete in private interview, talent, evening gown, lifestyle and fitness, and on-stage question. The Miss Oakland County Scholarship Program will award over $5,000 in scholarships and other prizes. The winner will receive a scholarship of at least $1,150, represent her social platform throughout the county, and vie for the title of Miss Michigan in June 2019.

Runners-up will receive scholarships of $600 to $800, and all non-finalist contestants will receive scholarship awards of $100.

In its 44 years, four Miss Oakland County titleholders have gone on directly to become Miss Michigan. 2006 Miss Oakland County Kirsten Haglund went on to become Miss America in 2008.

The addition eight contestants, listed with their hometown, school, talent, and platform, are:

  • Jaymie Paige Ziegler, Novi, Wayne State University graduate, jazz dance, “Crowns Against Cancer”;
  • Erica Rose Kennedy, Lapeer, Oakland University, musical theater vocal, “Get a Grip: Strategies to Reduce College Debt”;
  • Kristin Penrose, Lake Orion, Oakland University, “The Unity of Community: Outreach for At-Risk Children;
  • Vivian Zhong, Northville, University of Michigan, piano, “Integrating Tradition: Bridging the Generational Gap”;
  • Gabriella Petrucci, Novi, Grand Valley State University, lyrical dance, “Building SelfEsteem in Youth”;
  • Autumn Hegner, Lake Orion, Oakland University graduate, lyrical dance, “After School Arts for Children”;
  • Shelby McPherson, Royal Oak, Lawrence Technological University, trumpet, “Growing in STEM: Promoting Women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics”; and
  • Grace Whan, Birmingham, Pace University, Dance, “Kind is the New Pretty”.

Miss Oakland County’s Outstanding Teen Pageant, featuring 14 contestants aged 13-17, will be held the same day and location at 2 p.m.

Co-hosted by two former Miss Michigans, Nicole Blasczcyk Stoll and Madonna Emond Ladouceur, the pageant will feature a guest performance by noted Detroit-area hip-hop artist and vocalist David Strauss. Tickets may be purchased at the door for $25 or at

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