NEWTON, NJ—The family and friends of the 13 Little Miss, Little Mister and Miss Newton contestants gathered at Project Self-Sufficiency building on the evening of Friday, June 9 at 5:30 p.m. The Master of Ceremonies and Town Manager, Thomas S Russo Jr. opened the event.

Russo recognized the 2016 Little Miss Newton Winner, Liliana Flynn, Little Mister Newton Winner, Barry Mayfield and Miss Newton Winner, Anna King, as well as the Newton Town Council, Newton Recreation Commission members, and sponsors such as Service Electric Cable TV of NJ, Inc., who filmed the event, 7-eleven, All Access Staging, Applebee’s, Lowes, Newton High School Ag Shop, who provided the flowers for the winners, Salon Fig, Project Self-Sufficiency, and Wal-Mart.

The judges for this years’ competition were then introduced:

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  • Mr. John-Paul Couce- Captain of the Newton First Aid Squad
  • Hon. Sandra L Diglio- Mayor of Newton
  • Ms. Lauren Hennigan- 2013 Miss Newton

There were 13 contestants in all, eight for Little Miss Newton, four for Little Mister Newton and one for Miss Newton.

Little Miss Newton contestants went first. Bailey Broesler, Jessica Faye, Ishtar Jaoudy, Ciera Lesaine, Adamary Lugo, Alexa Nogueira, Emily Rossi, and Nicole Villegas were each escorted individually up to the stage to answer three questions from Russo. The questions were:

  • What is your favorite place to go in Newton and why?
  • What is your best friend’s name and what do you like to do together?
  • What do you want to be when you grow up?

Each of the girls had similar answers, saying they enjoyed going to “McDonalds or playing tag with their best friend”.  Rossi said her favorite place in Newton was “the school, because I like to learn more.”

Rossi wants to be veterinarian when she grows up, while most of the other girls said either a doctor or a teacher. 

The four boys, Alexander Michael Avila, Ian Patrick Dodd, J’Vion Downing, and Derek Nogueira went next, answering the same questions from Russo. Most had similar answers to “McDonalds and food places” being their favorite place in Newton and three out of four boys want to be police officers when they grow up.

The contestants were judged on personality, appearance, and poise, along with the three questions they were asked to answer in front of the judges.

While the judges were voting and Kathryn Walker, from the Town of Newton counted the results, Miss Newton was announced as there was only one candidate, Lisa Qarmout, who was escorted to the stage by her father.

The 2016 Miss Newton Winner, King, came up to the stage to put the crown on Qarmout’s head and give her a sash and bouquet of flowers made by Newton’s Agriculture shop.

The winners for the Little Miss and Little Mister contest were announced next. The 2017 winner for Little Miss Newton was announced as Emily Rossi, who was greeted by Qarmout on stage who helped her with her crown and sash.

This year for the Little Mister Newton competition, there was a tie in votes, meaning two of the boys had each won and were announced as Co-Little Mister Newtons. The winners were Ian Patrick Dodd and Alexander Michael Avila.

The boys split the sash, trophy and scepter as the town was not expecting a tie to come about and promised to buy another scepter, trophy, and sash so that both boys could have one of each.

Rossi is 7-years-old, has three brothers and a dog named Rex. She is in second grade at Merriam Avenue School and received the “Enthusiastic Reader Award” this year. Her favorite subject in school is music and after school she enjoys going to dance class and team gymnastics at Giant Gym. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, kayaking, coloring and singing. Her favorite color is blue.

Avila likes to play soccer, go to the park, go to the shore, and play with his brother, He also likes to play with his dog, His parents are very proud of him because he is a good student, does karate, and knows how to count in Japanese. He’s really good at computers and likes to play games like Minecraft.

Dodd is a life-long resident of Newton. He attends Merriam Avenue School and is in first grade. He is the youngest of three children and his sister Averi is former 2012 Little Miss Newton. He plays soccer for Newton united and is a NBYFL Cheerleader. He is an avid fan of Star Wars and enjoys playing Star Wars Battlefront on Xbox in his down time. He loves animals and has a dog named Lola and a cat named Meow-Meow.

All contestants received a goodie bag and a balloon for their participation in the event. There were refreshments and cookies available after the contest was over.

Little Miss Newton, Little Mister Newton, and Miss Newton were required to be at Newton Day this year and are invited to numerous events throughout the year such as the Holiday Parade, Annual Tree Lighting, St. Patrick’s Day Parade, Memorial Day Parade, and many others.