Omahan Aleah Peters flies on ‘Wings’ to win crown
The cheering from Miss Omaha Aleah Peters’ supporters rang through the North Platte High School Performing Arts Center on Saturday night, as host Brandi Petersen announced that Peters was the new Miss Nebraska.
Peters wowed the judges and soared to the top of the preliminary talent category during Thursday night’s preliminary competition with her show twirl performance to “Wings.” She tied with Lianna Prill for the preliminary talent award, and the pair split a $500 scholarship. Despite a baton drop during her final talent performance on Saturday night, Peters remained on top.
Peters, of Omaha, recently graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a bachelor’s degree in communication studies; she minored in psychology and leadership communication. Peters is the daughter of Kay and Jerry Peters. Her platform is “Cyberbullying Prevention — Make Kindness Viral.”
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Along with the scholarships she earned in talent and for winning the competition, Peters also took home a $1,000 cash scholarship Thursday night for the Miss America Community Service Award.
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Miss Douglas County Savannah Rave was named first runner-up and will take over as Miss Nebraska if Peters is unable to fulfill her obligations. Rave, of Omaha, is the daughter of Terry and Brenda Rave. She attends the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Rave’s platform is “Spread the Word to End the Word,” and her goal is to stop the derogatory use of the word “retarded.” During the talent portion of the competition, Rave sang “Hopelessly Devoted to You.”
Another University of Nebraska-Lincoln student, Miss Queen City Lianna Prill, was named second runner-up. Prill, of Kearney, is the daughter of Scott and Kristen Prill. Prill split the preliminary talent award with Peters after her vocal performance of “Don’t Rain on My Parade” on Thursday night. She also took the preliminary evening wear award on Wednesday night.
Prill’s platform is “Eat Well, Be Well.”
Miss Twin Rivers Jenni Wahonick, who was crowned in North Platte in February, was named third runner-up. Wahonick, of Papillion, tied with Miss State Fair Payton Merritt during Wednesday night’s talent competition. She performed a slam poetry reading of Taylor Mali’s “What Teachers Make.” Wahonick is an education major at the University of Central Missouri and is the daughter of Don and Mary Wahonick.
Rounding out the top five was Miss Scotts Bluff County Allison Baird. Baird, of Gering, was the first runner-up in last year’s Miss Nebraska Outstanding Teen program, and decided to continue competing after aging into the next category. Baird is a student at Doane University and is the daughter of Carl and Krista Baird. Her platform is “Learning C.U.R.V.E.,” and for the talent portion of the competition she sang “Somewhere.”
Miss Kearney Stacy Pospisil, Miss Gering LaRissa McKean, Miss Chadron Tyler Rambali, Miss Kool Aid Days Chelsea Arnold and Miss Nebraska State Fair Payton Merritt rounded out the top 10. Non-finalist awards were presented to Miss Western Nebraska Marie Allison and Miss Alliance Kate Duncan for interview and talent respectively.