Southwest Michigan legislators welcome Blossomtime royalty


LANSING— State Sens. John Proos and Tonya Schuitmaker and State Reps. Sharon Tyler, Matt Lori, Aric Nesbitt and Al Pscholka welcomed the 2011 Blossomtime Festival pageant finalists to the state Capitol on Wednesday.

“The Blossomtime Festival is one of southwest Michigan’s greatest traditions, and I am honored to host a great group of young people at the Capitol today,” said Proos, R-St. Joseph. “They are excellent representatives of their communities; volunteering throughout the region in their leadership roles. This is a wonderful tradition that is only possible because of the volunteers, participants and vendors who make the festival successful each year.”
The Blossomtime Festival and parade are the oldest and largest multi-community events in Michigan, celebrating the state’s rich agricultural traditions and all that the area has to offer.

The 105-year-old festival is governed by a volunteer board of directors and is supported by the communities of Southwest Michigan. In 2001, the Blossomtime Scholarship Fund began awarding more than $10,000 in scholarships each year.  For more information, including dates for this year’s festival, visit the event’s website at:

Pictured with the court, from top left, are southwest Michigan legislators Rep. Sharon Tyler, R-Niles; Sen. Proos; Rep. Al Pscholka, R-Stevensville; Rep. Matt Lori, R-Constantine; and Sen. Tonya Schuitmaker, R-Lawton.  The lawmakers welcome Miss Blossomtime and Miss Congeniality Lisa Bowman of Baroda (center right), Mr. Blossomtime Darren McCormick of Benton Harbor (center left) and the 2011 Blossomtime Court to the state Capitol. 

The above photograph of the Blossomtime Court is available by clicking on the image or by visiting Senator Proos’ photowire at: