WAKARUSA — The Wakarusa Maple Syrup Festival is the host of two contests for local girls.
The Wakarusa Maple Syrup Festival Queen Contest is open to eighth-graders at NorthWood Middle School who write an essay about the person who has impacted them the most. The Wakarusa Maple Syrup Festival Sweetheart Contest is open to kindergartners at Wakarusa Elementary.
The winner of the queen contest will be determined by the candidates' eighth-grade peers and staff. This year's candidates are Courtney Lengacher, Breanne Resler, Katlyn Rhoades, Ashlyn Romersberger and Sierra Sterling.
- Lengacher is the daughter of Jody and Tara Lengacher. She shows calves and pigs for 4-H and is part of the Knee Deep in 4-H Club. She attends youth group at Nappanee Missionary Church. Lengacher is involved in student council and plays basketball, Storm softball and volleyball for her school and the Northern Indiana Volleyball Association (NIVA).
- Resler is the daughter of Kraig and Nicki Resler. She's involved in student council, volleyball, basketball and is a member of Select Sings. She plays NIVA club volleyball, tennis and softball for the WaNee Storm. Resler attends youth group at Nappanee Missionary Church. She also shows pigs in 4-H.
- Rhoades is the daughter of Todd and Lisa Rhoades. She's been in the school band for three years. She also plays soccer, runs track and plays volleyball for school and Network club teams. Rhoades is a member of the 4-H Guernsey Club and is president of Tech Club.
- Romersberger is the daughter of Conan and Amy Romersberger of Nappanee. She plays volleyball and runs track. She's involved in choir, Select Singers and school musicals, most recently playing Ariel in "The Little Mermaid." Romersberger also participated in Circle the State with Song in February at Goshen College.
- Sterling is the daughter of Gabe and Angie Sterling of Wakarusa. She plays volleyball for school and NIVA club and is a member of the WaNee Storm softball team. She attends Grace Community Church and the youth group at Nappanee Missionary Church. Sterling participates in the school choir, Select Singers and has participated in the middle school musical for three years. She also competes in ISSMA's Solo and Ensemble Contest, winning gold medals for her solos and ensemble selections.
The Wakarusa Maple Syrup Sweetheart Contest is open to Wakarusa Elementary Kindergarten girls. This year's candidates are Leah Foor, Rowen Hershberger, Naomi Lopez and Leah Miller.
Voting for the sweetheart contest be from April 15 through April 22 at Cook's Pizza, 101 S. Elkhart Ave., Wakarusa, and at Interra Credit Union, 66685 Indiana 19, Wakarusa. Votes will be cast as money votes, which will be used to fund future queen and sweetheart contests.
The coronation will take place Friday, April 25, at 6 p.m. at NorthWood Middle School, 301 N. Elkhart Street, Wakarusa.
Each contestant will be recognized at the coronation. The queen, her court, the sweetheart and the winner of the Spirit of Wakarusa essay contest will be announced.
All contestants will ride in the festival parade at 10 a.m. Saturday, April 26.