Wednesday, January 27, 2016

"Platform Tips" by Kate Howe

The International Pageant System is all about the platform.  That is what makes our system so unique and impactful.  We are looking for women who are serious about making an impact about a cause close to their heart.  With the pageant right around the corner, I wanted to pass along some tips I have learned!

Starting with the name, make the title of your platform catchy.  For instance, I named my ‘Ignite the Imagination with Books’.  You want it to be something that the judges will not only remember, but also know what it is about at a high-level.  You want to grab their attention with your title and stand out as much as possible.  Often I would add “Access to New Books for Children in Need” on my paperwork so the judges knew actually what my platform was about. 

Have a 30-second elevator pitch.  You will be asked about your platform in many different settings by many different people.  You want to be able to tell someone in 30 seconds or less what your platform is, why it is important not only to you but also to them and what you are doing to support your platform.  Nothing longer than 30 seconds though.  Spend some time crafting that elevator pitch and memorize it so you can repeat to anyone at any time.  Stats, stats, stats!  Have a list of 10 statistics that you memorize and can pull into any conversation you are having about your platform.  Add a couple statistics to your elevator pitch and you will sound very knowledgeable about your platform. 

Blog…social media…blog…social media…repeat!!  You have to show the judges how serious you are about your platform.  Starting as soon as possible if you haven’t already get on social media, create your own website and start promoting your platform.  I was blogging about twice a week, six months out before the pageant last year.  I blogged about events I was doing to support my platform, statistics about my platform, ways to support my platform, basically anything related to my platform.  You want the judges to be able to look at your social media accounts and website and know in two seconds what your platform is and how serious you are taking it.  Creating a website isn’t as overwhelming as it seems at first.  I knew nothing about creating websites and I created my entire site myself.  It was a lot of work, but so much fun and extremely rewarding when it was complete. 

Have a game plan that includes a strategic marketing plan and be unique!  Have a very specific plan as to what you want to accomplish if you were given the opportunity to be Mrs. Minnesota.  Be specific!  When you list fundraisers you are hosting, give all the details possible – where, when, sponsors, etc.  If you are traveling and speaking out on your platform, list when and where those events will be held.  List all the contacts you are making and what they will be doing to help your platform.  Create something unique that stands out.  For instance, I created a mascot to come with me when I distribute books to kids and developed a smart phone application for parents that promoted the importance of literacy in the first five years. 

You love your platform and it is near and dear to your heart for a reason.  Know that why and get it out as much as possible.  The more the judges know how important your platform is to you the more they will know how serious you will be about sharing it with the world.  Partner closely with your non-profit, get to know them and what their goals are and align them with you.  Working your platform is incredibly rewarding and fun – the sky is the limit…go make your impact!!


Your 2015 Mrs. Minnesota International

Kate Howe











Monday, January 18, 2016

" Magic for Kids" by Kate Howe


I was invited to support the Shriners Hospital for Children by being the main act in a magic show that was part of a fundraiser.  Since 1923, Shriners Hospitals for Children has been providing specialized care to children with orthopaedic conditions, burns, and spinal cord injuries regardless of a family’s ability to pay.  Recognized as one of the world’s greatest philanthropies, Shriners Hospitals for Children has evolved into an international hospital system recognized for its devotion to transforming the lives of children through expert care and research. 

I was paired with the great Patrick Wallace, for the magic show.  Since 1994, Patrick has been entertaining audiences around the world with his magic.  He has helped support such organization as Relay for Life and March of Dimes.  Patrick was extremely entertaining and everyone loved him.  My little boys kept saying ‘wow’ after every act.  After the show, Patrick gave them a book on magic tricks so they can impress their friends someday. 

Patrick and I had to practice before the show.  I was part of the main act where I was going to be cut in half!!  The practicing actually took a while.  It was tricky to figure out how to get in and out of the box, hold my body a certain way and move on certain cues – it was harder than I thought it was going to be!  The best part about it was being sworn to secrecy on how the trick was done and I had many people asking after the show.

The event was a great success and we all ate ice cream afterwards.  I love partnering with the Shriners Hospital and hearing about the children they have helped over the years.  They have been very creative over the years with fundraisers and I am so happy I could help and get cut in half – ha!


Having So Much Fun,

Your 2015 Mrs. Minnesota International

Kate Howe











Sunday, January 10, 2016

"Speaking at Lake City Spark meeting" by Nicole Doyle

I was so happy to be invited to attend the Lake City women’s Spark club meeting to speak about Juvenile Arthritis. It was an honor to share my story along with what I do through out my year as Miss Teen Minnesota International 2015.


Here is a photo of Liz the event organizer and I.


Have a great day,

Nicole Doyle

Miss Teen Minnesota International 2015

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

"Snowmobiling in the Backcountry" by Nicole Doyle

I am currently having a blast in Colorado, my family and I are staying at our cabin in Grand Lake Colorado. We were lucky enough to have my uncle who lives out here take us on a snowmobile ride! It was so much fun and a total different experience compared to Minnesota snowmobiling!



Happy Holidays,

Nicole Doyle

Miss Teen Minnesota International 2015


Sunday, January 3, 2016

"A White Christmas" by Micole Doyle


Unfortunately most of Minnesota had a not so white Christmas, bringing you joy and A Lot of snow from Colorado!


 Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas and happy Holidays from Miss Teen Minnesota International and Family.



Nicole Doyle

Miss Teen Minnesota International 2015