From the Bel Air Independence Day Committee, Inc.:
Laura Patnaude, a sophomore at Towson University, has been selected by the Bel Air Independence Day Committee, Inc., to be its “Miss Bel Air Independence Day” for the 2013 celebrations.
As such, she will serve as hostess and participant in one of the region’s largest 4th of July celebrations, taking place from dawn to night on Thursday, July 4 and will also help promote the event in the weeks leading up to the event.
On July 4, Miss Patnaude an accomplished musician who is a member of the Towson University Marching Band and Pep Band, will sing the National Anthem at the flag-raising at 6:45 a.m. in front of Bel Air High School. She will also appear at the traditional Pancake Breakfast, and then will assist with the various competitions during the day, including the traditional events, Uncle Sam Says, and the Watermelon Eating Contest. Finally, she will lead the parade down Main Street in Bel Air at 6 p.m., and address the crowd from the reviewing stand.
Laura Patnaude received her crown in the presence of the Bel Air Independence Day Committee at a ceremony at Bel Air Town Hall on Monday, May 6, and was presented to the Bel Air Town Commissioners and those in attendance at Town Hall that evening. Addressing the crowd, she said “I am simply over the moon excited to be chosen as the new Miss Bel Air Independence Day! To be named the official hostess for the entire day of celebration is a wonderful way to thank the community for its support of this traditional patriotic event!”
“Choosing our 2013 Miss Bel Air took some time,” said Michael Blum, Vice President of the Committee, who chaired the process. “We had hoped to get it done sooner, but we are absolutely delighted with Laura Patnaude’s enthusiasm, demeanor and attitude. She’ll be a great addition to the celebration!”
Representing Bel Air and the Bel Air Independence Day Committee, Miss Patnaude will compete for the title of Miss Maryland in late June, a part of the Miss America Pageant process. A seasoned pageant competitor, she has already competed in many pageants around the state, including being named First Runner Up in the Miss Mason-Dixon Pageant, so she is ready for the big step up to the state-wise level.
In addition to her work with the Bel Air Independence Day Committee, Laura will spend her year supporting and raising funds for “Challenge Day—The Be the Change Movement,” an experimental program that uses community-building activities in order to prevent unfair judgments on people. Essentially, Challenge Day brings home the message that a book cannot be judged by its cover, and that people can work with each other without any inhibitions, no matter what first impressions might mistakenly communicate.
Bel Air Independence Day Committee President Donald W. Stewart said, “We are so thrilled to have our third-ever official hostess, and we thank the Miss Maryland Scholarship Pageant coordinators for supporting us in this process. Laura Patnaude is a phenomenally accomplished and promising young member of our community, and we are proud to be able to support her, and look forward to her representing our event!”
For more information on joining the Bel Air July 4 Parade, please visit belairjuly4.org (the Committee’s web site), or call 410-879-4245. For more information about the Bel Air Independence Day Committee and the July 4 events in Bel Air, Maryland, please go to the Committee’s web site, or to the Bel Air Independence Day Committee’s Facebook page. The all-volunteer Bel Air Independence Day Committee, Inc., is recognized by the United States Internal Revenue Service as a 501(c)(3) tax exempt corporation.