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Auction Raises $7K For Miss. Nebraska Pageant

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By GinaLisa Tamayo

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Updated: Sun, 01 Dec 2013 10:24:41 CST

Miss Nebraska and Miss Nebraska's Outstanding Teen made an appearance in North Platte for the Festival of Trees auction on Sunday.

The proceeds from the auction went to benefit the Miss Nebraska Scholarship program and the Children's Miracle Network.

The spirit of Christmas filled the room as people walked around looking for items to take home to their homes and businesses.

"We purchased a tree for Great Western Bank for $475," said Leland Poppe, Group President of Great Western Bank.

22 Trees and 14 wreaths were up for auction on Sunday.

Jay Engel, the Executive Director of the Miss Nebraska Pageant says that a portion of the money raised tonight will go directly to the cash scholarships they give out each year.

"We give away between $40 and $45 thousand dollars of cash scholarships," he said.

Many of the cash scholarships will go to girls who enter the 2014 pageant. Organizers would like to raise enough money for every contestant to walk away with at least $1,000 in scholarship money.

Miss Nebraska and Miss Nebraska Outstanding Teen expressed how much the program means to them.

"It's a pretty amazing program and the way it's able to let girls get into their communities to be able to have a voice to be able to have a platform and to be able to influence others and make a difference in what they want to be able to have a voice in—I think is really important," said  Miss Nebraska, JaCee Pilkington.

Samantha Washington, Miss Nebraska's Outstanding Teen said, "Being a role model for girls is just incredible."

People we're very happy with their auction items. Emily and Denise Stadler were especially happy with their purchase. Denise bought a tree for $175 and says giving back to Miss Nebraska pageant and the Children's miracle fund is more than just a donation but both of these organizations are close to her heart.

"We are big supporters of both Miss Nebraska and the Children's Miracle Network. Miss Nebraska because Emily was Mariah Cook's little sister who was Ms. Nebraska 2012 and also Emily was diagnosed with Leukemia right before the Miss Nebraska Pageant of 2012 and so she is a Children's Miracle Network hospital child," she said.

Overall, they raised over $7,000 dollars and over 475 people attended the Festival of Trees in the 3 days it was going on.