Category:
Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests

More Potato Chip Queens

Inspired by Paul's post yesterday about the Potato Chip Queen contest, I did some research over at newspapers.com (subscription required) and came up with what I believe is a complete list of the Potato Chip Queens from 1946 to 1956, except for 1947 for which year I can't find any info. Perhaps there was no queen that year. After 1956 the contest seems to have transitioned into a Miss Teen Potato Chip contest. So, not quite the same.

Based on what I found, Nikki Geer was awarded the crown in 1946, but Paul found info indicating it was given to Dorothea Fagnano. Since Dorothea was only 15, I'm guessing she must have been given some kind of teen version of the crown.

Also, In 1952 the crown was given to a chipmunk ("Miss Potato Chip-munk").

Finally, the Potato Chip Queen for 1953, Joan Gehan (aka UN-KA-PU-CHI), was so popular that the next year they promoted her to "Miss Potato Chip of the Century."

1946: Nikki Geer
Shickshinny Mountain Echo - Nov 8, 1946



1948: Joan Smith
Opelousas Daily World - Feb 12, 1948



1949: Patricia Hunter
Zanesville Times Recorder - Jan 29, 1949



Edit: Found a picture of Pat Hunter's potato chip photoshoot in Life - Feb 28, 1949.



1950: Peggy Sharpe
Honolulu Star-Advertiser - Mar 19, 1950



1951: Edie Pike
Honolulu Star-Advertiser - Mar 4, 1951



1952: Miss Potato Chip-munk (with maid-in-waiting Ronda Sherwood)
Marengo Republican News - Feb 7, 1952



1953: Joan Gehan — promoted to "Miss Potato Chip of the Century" in 1954
Image via TOGACHIPGUY.com



Pittsburgh Press - Jan 28, 1954



1955: Ruth Burkhart
Kingsport Times-News - Mar 6, 1955



1956: Elaine Kuntz
Louisville Courier-Journal - Jan 29, 1956



Update: a better picture of the 1956 winner, Elaine Kuntz. (via Pinterest)

Posted By: Alex - Wed Aug 23, 2017 - Comments (5)
Category: Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests, Junk Food, 1940s, 1950s

Spreadsheet Championship

John Dumoulin of Virginia recently won an international competition on Microsoft Excel proficiency, which was part of the larger Microsoft Office Specialist World Championship held in Anaheim, CA. People come from all over the world to test their skills at Excel, Word, and PowerPoint. (Though it's restricted to ages 13-22).

Said Dumoulin: "Some of the foreign countries, they've been training for hours and hours and hours on end. When you first meet the international students, everyone's friendly, but when they find out you're competing against them in the same category, they get this fire in their eyes. They want to win."

More info: CTV News

Posted By: Alex - Thu Aug 10, 2017 - Comments (5)
Category: Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests

Miss Garlic

"Miss Garlic will be chosen on the basis of personality, congeniality, talent, knowledge of garlic — and breath."

Greenville News - Feb 10, 1986



Southern Illinoisan - Feb 11, 1986

Posted By: Alex - Sun Aug 06, 2017 - Comments (2)
Category: Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests, 1980s

Mr. and Miss Boll Weevil

This post is for KDP, who in response to Paul's post yesterday about the Maid of Cotton pageant, noted the apparent lack of a counterpart, Miss Boll Weevil.

There is indeed a Miss Boll Weevil, as well as a Mr. Boll Weevil. These titles have periodically been conferred on students at Alabama's Enterprise State Community College, whose mascot is a boll weevil.

For instance, in 1972 Pat Hatcher and Bobby Bright were the students named Mr. and Miss Boll Weevil. Bright went on to serve as the U.S. Representative for Alabama's 2nd congressional district from 2009 to 2011. Bright was the first Democrat to represent the district since 1962, but he didn't win a second term.

The Montgomery Advertiser - Nov 15, 2000



The Montgomery Advertiser - Jan 23, 1972

Posted By: Alex - Sat Jul 22, 2017 - Comments (4)
Category: Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests, Contests, Races and Other Competitions

Hillevi Rombin and her Performing Dogs

Hillevi Rombin (1933-1996) was crowned Miss Universe in 1955. Her talents included gymnastics, track & field, skiing, and sausage snake charming. She demonstrated the latter with her "performing dogs" for National Kraut and Frankfurter Week.

More info: wikipedia, cardcow.com

Rombin crowned Miss Universe



1955: with her performing dogs

Posted By: Alex - Wed Jul 05, 2017 - Comments (3)
Category: Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests, 1950s

Edward Seese Memorial Scholarship

When millionaire real estate investor Edward Seese died in March 1995, he left instructions in his will to fund a $4.5 million scholarship at Broward Community College. The recipients of the scholarship, he instructed, were to be high school students who earned a C average. He felt that scholarships typically went to high academic achievers, so the C students had been "left out in the cold."

The scholarship still seems to be available to those who qualify.

Tallahassee Democrat - June 21, 1995

Posted By: Alex - Wed Jun 28, 2017 - Comments (2)
Category: Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests, Education, Universities, Colleges, Private Schools and Academia, 1990s

Miss Bomarc Interceptor Missile



The missile is the supersonic Bomarc anti-aircraft missile developed by Boeing and the University of Michigan Aeronautical Research Center. The woman is 18-year-old Fran Frost. The year was 1958.

The Hill Top Times, newspaper of Hill Air Force Base, offered the following coverage:

This guided missile hairstyle was inspired by the supersonic Bomarc missile. It’s a swirl-a-wave which features supersonic action from nape to crown. From a siren list, it cruises to a froth of fluff swinging from cheek to tip of ear. The nuclear payload goes into super action and long-range swirls intercepted by flowing lines and high altitude sweeps cruising towards its target of pixie bangs on the brow.

Fran Frost went on to be Miss Utah State Fair, Miss Dairy Queen, and Miss World Contact Lens, but then retired from modeling.

Read her full story at Conelrad Adjacent.

Posted By: Alex - Sat Jun 10, 2017 - Comments (3)
Category: Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests, Beauty, Ugliness and Other Aesthetic Issues, 1950s, Weapons

Summer Redneck Games

Held annually in Dublin, Georgia since 1996. Events include redneck horseshoes (using toilet seats), the mud pit belly flop, armpit serenade, watermelon seed spitting, and bobbing for pig's feet. They also promise you'll see a lot of butt crack, camouflage, and four-wheel drives.

More info: Summer Redneck Games, pinterest





Posted By: Alex - Fri May 19, 2017 - Comments (2)
Category: Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests, Games, Hillbillies, Country Bumpkins, Ruralism and Flyover Country

Roy L. Gray, the Most Average Man

In 1927, William S. Dutton, a writer for American magazine, decided to locate America's most average man. The requirements were that whoever it was had to be:

A native-born American, of average age, average size, average education and average viewpoint. He had to own an average home on an average street, drive an average automobile and be head of a family of four, which is the average used by the census bureau. He had to be engaged in an average one-man business, be neither a leader nor a laggard in public affairs, neither prominent nor obscure, popular or unpopular.

To conduct his search, Dutton used the census report, a map, and a weather chart to select America's most average city, which he decided was Fort Madison, Iowa. Then he conducted a survey of Fort Madison's residents to determine who the most average man living there was.

He finally settled on Roy L. Gray, owner of a clothing store. Gray was 43 years old, married, and had two children.

Dutton knocked on Gray's door and informed him that he was the most average man in America. Gray seemed to take the news in stride. He agreed to an interview, and then was whisked off to Chicago where he was given the VIP treatment, which included getting to meet the mayor. Then he returned to his average life, and as far as I can tell never made the news again.

He should have tried to hook up with Miss Typical.

Rushville Daily Republican - Oct 26, 1927



The Lincoln Star - Oct 25, 1927

Posted By: Alex - Thu Feb 16, 2017 - Comments (3)
Category: Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests, Boredom, 1920s

Miss Mona Lisa 1958

February 1958: A jury of "celebrated painters" convened for the Mona Lisa Grand Prix awarded the title of "Mona Lisa 1958" to Luce Bona. What made the award slightly unusual is that Bona hadn't been a contestant. The judges just happened to see her as she was walking by outside and decided she was the one. At least, that was the story reported in the press.



Louisville Courier-Journal - Feb 19, 1958


Here's the winner from the previous year, Maria Lea. Apparently the gimmick of this contest was that the winner posed in a picture frame, which made her somehow like the Mona Lisa.

The Lincoln Star - Jan 13, 1957


Later in 1958 a jury of French mystery writers selected Luce Bona as the girl with the "Most Devilish Eyes." I'm assuming she was actually entered into that contest.

I can't find any references to Luce Bona after 1958. Perhaps she gave up modeling, despite such a promising start.

Wilmington News Journal - Apr 12, 1958


Posted By: Alex - Mon Dec 05, 2016 - Comments (8)
Category: Art, Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests, Beauty, Ugliness and Other Aesthetic Issues, 1950s

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Alex is the creator and curator of the Museum of Hoaxes. He's also the author of various weird, non-fiction, science-themed books such as Elephants on Acid and Psychedelic Apes.

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