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Who will be our next Bella Regina?

Few events in the community can match the pageantry of the annual Columbus Day Queen Contest. The queen will be the star of the Italian community for a year’s reign. She will represent all of us with her grace and beauty throughout the Chicago area at special events.

t018vLDeASMW7vHIJwY3u25wARehXKThhztZxF5PRrgThe pageant is sponsored annually by the Joint Civic Committee of Italian Americans. It is a special day for the community. It is held on Sunday so all of the family can share in the event. The date of this year’s event is July 22.

The venue for this year’s pageant is Alta Villa Banquets, whose high standards of cuisine and service are known throughout Chicagoland. The setting is perfect for the pageant, with a lovely decorated banquet room and a stage and runway large enough to accommodate the production number, gown presentation and crowning of the Queen.

The day begins with morning rehearsals for the production number, which is choreographed by Marilyn Cusimano Fredericks. The production number provides the first opportunity for the judges to form an impression.

The contestants introduce themselves in the gown section, giving the judges greater insight into the girls’ poise and personality. The pageant continues with votes tallied for semi-finalists, finalists and queen selection by a respected accounting firm. Votes are based on beauty, poise and personality.

Judges are selected based on their high standards and credentials in the fashion and arts world. Cochairmen of the pageant are Jim Glimco and Mauro Glorioso. 2012 Parade Chairman Vincent Naccarato will crown the queen. A check of $1,000 will be presented by Antonio M. Romacucci, president of the Joint Civic Committee of Italian Americans. Adding excitement to the even will be Master of Ceremonies Ryan Chiavarini, co-host of the Morning Show Windy City on ABC 7 Chicago.

Contestants must be residents of the Chicago area between the ages of 18 and 23, never married and at least 50 percent Italian heritage.

We encourage all eligible young ladies to participate in this most proud display of our heritage. Nothing speaks louder than your presence. Be with us as Bianca Scola, Columbus Day Parade Queen 2011, passes her crown to the next Bella Regina.

This year’s pageant will be begin at 3 p.m. Tickets are $55 per person, with children ages 5 to 12 attending for $30 and children under 4 attending for free. For details, call 708-450-9050.

About Fra Noi

Fra Noi produces a magazine and website that serve the Chicago-area Italian-American community. Our magazine offers our readers a monthly feast of news and views, culture and entertainment that keeps our diverse and widely scattered readers in touch with each other and their heritage. Our website offers a dizzying array of information drawn from every corner of the local community.