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Frank Faralli Jr. Captures Inaugural Mr. Mature America Pageant Title

The next big event is the Doo Dah Parade, April 12.

Walt Hohman of Wards Pastries tests a shaving cream pie in preparation for  the Doo Dah Parade's PieAsco April 12. (Photo provided by Mark Soifer)
Walt Hohman of Wards Pastries tests a shaving cream pie in preparation for the Doo Dah Parade's PieAsco April 12. (Photo provided by Mark Soifer)
Written and submitted by Mark Soifer, Ocean City Public Relations Director

Ocean City’s First Mr. Mature America Pageant on Saturday received a standing ovation from an audience of 400.

Frank Faralli Jr., 61, a nurse from Cape May Court House, is the world’s first Mr. Mature America. Faralli sang Edelweiss for his talent, and won the poise and interview awards. Former Ocean City Mayor Roy Gillian, 84, won Talent with an impressive rendition of piano favorites.

Each of the other contestants received enthusiastic ovations, including:

* Rene Sese, 73 of Egg Harbor Township, who sang a love song;

* Eugene Ross, 89 of Ocean City, who recited a humorous poem and presented an original song;

* Jerry Lukas, 66 of Vineland, a noted cartoonist who produced a professional onstage drawing in three minutes; and

* Captain Joel S. Fogel, who entertained with a lively, original harmonica and ukulele performance.

Bubba Mac, another contestant scheduled to appear, was hospitalized last Thursday.We wish Bubba a complete and speedy recovery. 

The event began with a lively and humorous production number choreographed by Jessica Albertson. This set the stage for a very entertaining show by talented contestants 60 and over. 

The pageant was enhanced by the performance of four talented ladies over 60, including:

* Hollywood Walk of Fame Legend, actress and vocalist, Peggy King who sang a jazz number;

* Betty Lambert, an 81 year old baton twirler who amazed the audience with her twirling and splits;

* Vanessa Shaw, Miss New Jersey Senior America and long time Broadway performer with an inspiring vocal performance; and

* super soprano, Nancy Fox, who sang the National Anthem and an original Runway song.

Atlantic City icon, Pinky Kravitz, received Mr. Mature America’s Inspirational Award. Kravitz, 86, has been hosting a popular radio show for 57 years.

He is a Hall of Fame broadcaster and has received countless public service awards. He was presented the inspiration award by Hall of Fame broadcaster, Dick Sheeran, a popular anchor and feature reporter with KYW-TV 3 for over 30 years, who assisted emcee Maribeth Neall.

Neall and Kristie Fenton, who produce the Miss Ocean City, Little Miss and Junior Miss Pageants, provided the expertise necessary to structure the event professionally.

Ray Esterlund, Assistant executive Producer, was the glue that held the event together, attending to countless details over many months. 

Laurie Howey produced an outstanding program book with the assistance of Art Barlow. Stu Sirott handled the stage design and worked on production. Donna Schmitt was in charge of tickets and finances.

Jessica Albertson choreographed the colorful production number that got the show off to a rousing start.

Denise Sammartino of the Flanders Hotel was an important member of the production team. The Flanders was also a valued sponsor that provided dinner for the judges and contestants.

Brittany Johnson assisted with production, realtor John Walton was the Men’s Host. Walton chairs the Business Person’s Plunge held every year to welcome the new season prior to Memorial day.

John Sabella, CPA, MST of Ford Scott and Associates was our auditor and David Nahan, official photographer. 

Judges included:

* Chair Janet Simiriglio;

* Mamma Dietz Ruth Eni, chair person and chief executive officer of pageant sponsor, Dietz and Watson, who was also honored during the pageant;

* Peter Voudouris, President of the Board of the Flanders Hotel and a Pageant sponsor;

* Jane French, a volunteer with the Public Relations Office for 23 years and Volunteer of the Year in 2010;

* Rosalyn Lifshin, Executive Director of the Ocean City Arts Center and a casino marketing executive for 25 years; and

* Lora Stankiewicz, former owner of Bernie’s Barber Shop and also a member of a ministry team at Coastal Christian of Ocean City that leads Grief Share, a program that helps people through the process of grief.

It took these people and more to present the first Mr. Mature America Pageant. And yes, we’re going to do it again next year.

SAVE THE DATE: The 29th annual Doo Dah Parade will highlight a weekend of events devoted to fun and humor.

The parade begins at noon at 6th and Asbury Avenue, and goes to 12th and Asbury before going on to the Boardwalk and ending at the Music Pier.

Peter Funt of Candid Camera will be grand marshal. The Parade will include 600 friendly basset hounds, costumed characters, clowns, fun brigades, bands and surprises.

When the parade ends at the Music Pier, the popular PieAsco begins at the Moorlyn Terrace site. Folks sit in grandstands and smoosh each other with shaving cream pies honoring our great, late friend Soupy Sales. You can enter just by being there. Smoosh the person sitting next to you and receive a certificate to celebrate the occasion.

khivasmommy March 26, 2014 at 10:30 AM
Good article. I appreciate all the details. And I'm sorry to hear abouty Bubba Mac. I pray he gets better very quickly! That said... Why is this article accompanied by a pieasco trial run, instead of a photo of Frank Faralli Jr, the Mr Mature America winner? You have weeks to build enthusiasm for Doo Dah but, as is the way with all things, Frank's moment of fame may last just 15 minutes.
khivasmommy March 26, 2014 at 10:34 AM
Ah! Wait! Here's the stuff! Complete with photo. http://www.shorenewstoday.com/snt/news/index.php/ocean-city-events/50648-talent-poise-maturity-at-mr-mature-america-pageant.html
Captain Joel S. Fogel March 27, 2014 at 12:46 PM
Great stuff and fun was had by all.....good work Mark Soifer and his team ! www.captainfogel.com

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