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Ashland High senior wins Pear Blossom pageant

An Ashland High School senior will reign supreme over this year's Pear Blossom Festival.

Victoria Mayfield was crowned Saturday night at the 17th annual Senior Royalty Scholarship Pageant at North Medford High School. The 2006 queen, Jesse Sarver, a North Medford High School graduate, crowned her successor.

First runner-up was Elizabeth Shinn of Phoenix High School, and second runner-up was Kristen Haga of Crater High School.

Each princess automatically earns a $500 college scholarship. The winner becomes queen, reigns over the Pear Blossom Parade on April 14, and receives a $2,000 college scholarship.

This year's pageant featured a ballroom dancing contest that went over big with the crowd that filled North Medford High's auditorium.

The dancing winners were Joshua Kaveney and Kela Alleman; each took away $350 for their effort.

After her crowning, Mayfield said she was "very nervous," but the experience was well worth it.

"Win or lose, it didn't matter because of the life lessons I learned," she said.

Mayfield's friends showed their support by wearing T-shirts with "Queen Victoria" emblazoned on the front.

"Most of them couldn't believe I was going to be a princess," she said. "But they cheered for me. I definitely felt their presence."

Mayfield boasts a 4.0 grad-point average and will use the scholarship as a springboard to college, she said.

The Pear Blossom Scholarship Pageant differs than a traditional beauty pageant in that outside activities, such as volunteer work and grades, matter more than stage presence and a flashy dress.

"It definitely means a lot to win this," Mayfield said. "Nearly 75 percent of our score is determined before we take the stage. It helped me be relaxed."

Reach reporter Chris Conrad at 776-4471, or e-mail cconrad@mailtribune.com.

Runners up in the year's Pear Blossom junior royalty pagent were asked to give a funny face for the throng of camera toting family in attendance Saturday at North Medford High School. - Mail Tribune / Roy Musitelli