First Miss Greater Rockville bids farewell

By Steve Smith - Staff Writer
Rockville/Region - posted Thu., Feb. 7, 2013
Katlyn Lewicke was emotional after her crowning on March 17, 2012. Photo courtesy of Charles Wright. - Contributed Photo

As the inaugural Miss Greater Rockville, Katlyn Lewicke, prepares to pass her crown along at this year's pageant, she spoke with the ReminderNews about some of the highlights of her year of service, how she was affected by the Vernon area, and how she hopes the program will continue to offer opportunities to local women.

“I have been fortunate to make appearances at a lot of community events, and have met several town officials and residents of the Rockville/Vernon area,” Lewicke said. “I've been lucky to learn about a lot of the history of the town and the area, which is a source of pride for a lot of residents. For me, what's been even more rewarding is learning about the strong sense of community in Rockville. There have been so many people who have been extremely welcoming and are very committed to making Rockville a better town.”

Hand-in-hand with that, she hopes she's taught Rockville a little about the Miss America and Miss Connecticut organizations.

“I'd like to think that Rockville has a more thorough understanding of the representatives of the Miss America program,” she said. “Since the Miss Greater Rockville organization is brand new, it's been an adjustment process, but I hope people have gotten used to seeing someone in a sparkly crown and a sash at a lot of public events, and I hope the next Miss Greater Rockville will be welcomed with the same enthusiasm that I have been very grateful to receive.”

The future of the Miss Greater Rockville program, Lewicke said, includes building on the foundation of appearances she's done, but also to continue to make progress and gain support in the community, as similar programs in other towns have over the years.

“We hope to continue with more fundraising and offer larger scholarships,” Lewicke said, “and hopefully get more participants in the program as the years go by.”

To the next Miss Greater Rockville, Lewicke offers some advice.

“She'll probably be a girl who has never held a title before, and that can be a little bit of an overwhelming experience. The organization sort of consumes you, and it's wonderful, but it's a heady feeling. When she is crowned, she'll be whisked away to her first interview and appearances right off the bat. So, my advice to the girls competing is to keep flexibility in mind, know that they are in the role of a civil servant, and that it's not always a glamorous job. It's not always a job where people are going to understand what your role and purpose is, so you are a catalyst for setting a good example and educating people on what the Miss America organization is, as well as representing Rockville within the Miss America organization. So, the role really goes two ways.”

She plans to continue guiding the next titleholder, and helping her to prepare for the Miss Connecticut pageant in June.

At the Vernon Town Council meeting on Feb. 5, Lewicke thanked the council for the support she's received, and Mayor George Apel thanked Lewicke for her year of service.

“It's been such a warm welcome,” Lewicke told the council, “that I'm sure that contestants from all over the state will be jealous.”

Lewicke said she was lucky to be able to use her crown as a microphone for her own community service initiative of child abuse prevention, and being able to talk with local media outlets. She also enjoyed the events on the town green in Rockville (including July in the Sky and the Rockville Fest) and meeting so many people – especially children she's met multiple times over the year.

“I feel like I've watched little ones grow up, and now we know and recognize each other,” she said. “Those are the moments that make it a poignant and sentimental good-bye.”

The Miss Greater Rockville pageant takes place at 6 p.m., on Feb. 16, at Rockville High School.

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