17-year-old Brandywine senior is 2004 Miss Apple Festival

Published 2:46 am Friday, September 24, 2004

By By SPIROS GALLOS / Niles Daily Star
NILES-Judges chose Ashley Hullinger of Niles as Miss Apple Festival Queen on Thursday night.
Hullinger, a 17-year-old Brandywine Senior High School senior, was selected from the 17 girls who entered the Miss Apple Festival Queen contest, which was held at the Niles High School auditorium.
She is the daughter of Cort Hullinger and Cindy Fitzsimons.
During the final round, Hullinger was asked by Master of Ceremonies John Colip, "If you and your mother traded places for one day, what would be her biggest fear?"
Hullinger plans to attend Ferris State University to study nursing.
After the crowning, Hullinger was still in a state of shock.
Hullinger wore a candy-apple red dress adorned with sequins in the contest, which was the first she ever participated in.
The contest, which had the theme of "4 Flags-4 Seasons-4 Ever," was set against a blue backdrop with pages from a calendar hanging from the ceiling above the stage.
The night opened with a dance ensemble to the song "Calendar Girl" performed by the contestants of the Miss Apple Festival and Jr. Miss Apple Festival contests.
First runner-up was Anna Ferris from Buchanan, who wore a candy-apple red dress.
The 16-year-old Buchanan High School junior is the daughter of Danny and Jenny Ferris.
Her plans for after graduation are acquire her associates degree in liberal arts at Lake Michigan College, then transfer to the University of Michigan to pursue a major in law. She would like to make a name for herself in politics.
Her question during the final round was "What advice would you give to the presidential candidates?"
Ferris said she would tell the candidates to just be themselves. "Our country looks to the president for leadership, and if you're fake, they're gonna find out," she said.
Second runner-up was Sarah Ritter, a Buchanan High School senior and student at Twin Cities Beauty School.
Ritter, who is 17, wore a black dress at the contest and is the daughter of Todd and Carol Ritter.
After graduation Ritter plans on taking her college state boards tests and after that she plans to go to a local college to get a degree in business.
Rebecca Ritter was chosen as Miss Congeniality. Rebecca and her sister Sarah were two of the three contestants from Buchanan who won titles at the contest.
After graduation, the 16-year-old junior at Buchanan High School plans to attend a four year college to major in journalism and minor in dance.
After graduation she plans to attend a four year college to major in journalism and minor in dance.
Danielle Foster won the Junior Miss Apple Festival contest.
The 14-year-old Foster, who won the contest in a field of 24 contestants, is the daughter of Elaine and Scott Foster.
First runner-up was 12-year-old Lynsey Marker.
She is the daughter of Al and Mary Marker.
Abby Zeider, the daughter of Scott and Cathy Zeider, was chosen as Miss Congeniality.