This year’s competition had a little bit of a spin to it with only two contestants vying for the crown — Houser and Grace Barker, who was named first attendant.
While this could have caused issues with both trying to come out on top, the queen said it actually made the contest fun and had a lot of positive aspects.
“It was different because we both knew that we were going to be winners and it’s just good to know who I’m going to be traveling with,” she said. “She’s a great girl and I can’t wait.”
Houser is happy to “promote Milan as a great place and all of our great things.”
“I love Milan because it’s where I’ve grown up, my family’s grown up and just knowing that it’s such a small community, it’s a good feeling. ... I’m very excited. I’m very honored to represent the town of Milan,” she said.
Houser takes over for last year’s Milan Melon Festival queen, Olivia Blatnik.
During the competition, the contestants are asked to answer a random question in front of the judges and audience, called a fishbowl question. For Houser, this was the area that took her the longest to prepare for. During the contest, that meant answering who she would like to trade places with and why. The daughter of Brian and Stephanie Houser chose someone who meant a great deal to her.
“My mom because I would like to see how hard the role is that she plays, making sure that my sisters and I are always prepared and on time and looking our best,” she said, adding her mother was actually the person who helped her prepare by quizzing her “over and over again.”
Her favorite part, though, was learning to overcome a long time fear of public speaking.
“Just being able to get upstage and conquer my fear, to speak in front of everyone, that was the best part,” she said. “I practiced over and over again in the mirror.”
Houser currently is enrolled in the cosmetology program at EHOVE Career Center.