2018-06-09 / News

Miss Michigan 2017 Visits Mackinac Island

By Marley Tucker


At left: Malin Erickson of Minnesota (left) enjoyed meeting Miss Michigan 2017, Heather Kendrick, at the Mackinac Island Public Library. Miss Kendrick talked about learning the violin when she was Miss Erickson’s age and they bonded over their love of books. The reigning Miss Michigan will relinguish her crown this month. As a Girl Scout, she served here about 10 years ago on the Governor’s Honor Guard. At left: Malin Erickson of Minnesota (left) enjoyed meeting Miss Michigan 2017, Heather Kendrick, at the Mackinac Island Public Library. Miss Kendrick talked about learning the violin when she was Miss Erickson’s age and they bonded over their love of books. The reigning Miss Michigan will relinguish her crown this month. As a Girl Scout, she served here about 10 years ago on the Governor’s Honor Guard. Eleven-year-old Malin Erickson was thrilled to meet Miss Michigan 2017, Heather Kendrick, and discuss their shared interest in music as Miss Kendrick made a stop at the Mackinac Island Public Library during a Saturday, May 26 appearance on the Island.

Malin, who is from Maple Grove, Minnesota, is learning to play the cello, was visiting the Island for the second time with her family. She said she loves going to all of the shops and experiencing its natural beauty.

“I haven’t really gotten into it yet, but I know how to hold the cello and I’ve seen it played,” she said. “It’s so cool! I can’t wait to learn more.”

Miss Kendrick played a musical arrangement of Lady Gaga’s pop song “Bad Romance” in the talent portion of the 2017 Miss Michigan pageant, so she could relate to her own experiences of playing a stringed instrument. Some may also recognize her from her appearances on the TV show “America’s Got Talent” with Detroit’s electro-pop violin band NUCLASSICA in 2016.

Adorned in her ceremonial crown and sash, Miss Kendrick spoke with residents and visitors, signed autographs, and posed for photographs in the library. From Marysville, she competed in the Miss Michigan contest as Miss Washtenaw County, where she now lives and works.

She was graduated from the University of Michigan in 2016 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in organizational studies and a Bachelor of Music degree in music education with a focus on violin. She is employed at the university as program director, in keeping with her platform issue as Miss Michigan: “Keeping the Arts in Education: Advocating STEAM.”

STEAM stands for science, technology, engineering, the arts, and mathematics. She has traveled some 50,000 miles in appearances as Miss Michigan, from school events to volunteer work. She is also a state ambassador for Children’s Miracle Network hospitals, so she makes time for hospital visits, as well.

Older than some pageant winners in the past, Miss Kendrick, who will surrender her crown to a new winner this month, believes she has matured through experiences and can fully appreciate the opportunities she has been given. She said travelling all over Michigan has allowed her to meet wonderful people who embody what the Great Lakes state represents.

Miss Kendrick, who also visited St. Ignace and Mackinaw City during her trip to the Straits of Mackinac area, said there is much to like about Mackinac Island, from glittering waves to locations unique to the Island like the Butterfly House.

“This is something I have been looking forward to,” she said. “I was a Girl Scout, and am a lifetime member, and I was on the Mackinac Island Honor Guard when I was younger. I was in Troop 001, so it’s probably been at least 10 years since I’ve been back. I feel a sense of home. It is definitely familiar to be back here. I’ve been embraced with open arms.”

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