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Blackburn and Myers Picked As Princesses For 500 Festival
Updated May 5, 2013 1:11 AM
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(INDIANAPOLIS) - Taylor Blackburn, of Mitchell, a sports communication broadcasting major at IU and Codie Myers, a 2010 graduate of Washington High School and the 2010 Daviess County Fair Queen, has been selected as one of 33 princesses for the 500 Festival, part of the events leading up to the 97th running of the Indianapolis 500 on May 26.

Of the 33 princesses, one will be selected as the 500 Festival Queen.

If chosen, they will reign over events such as the IPL 500 Festival Parade, Chase 500 Festival Kids' Day and Rookie Run and the Indianapolis 500.

Becoming a 500 Festival Princess is an experience of a lifetime. As ambassadors of the 500 Festival, the 2013 Indianapolis 500® and their hometowns, the princesses will attend and volunteer at 500 Festival events and programs throughout the month of May.

In addition, the 33 princesses will be involved with statewide outreach programs of their choosing. Princesses are also present at various Indianapolis Motor Speedway® functions and participate in the Indianapolis 500® Victory Circle celebration.

This year's 500 Festival princesses represent 9 Indiana colleges and universities and 21 cities and towns across the state. The young women were selected from 200 applicants based on communication skills, poise, academic performance and community and volunteer involvement.

Applicants must be between 18 and 23 years old, single and legal residents of Indiana. Candidates must also be full-time students in a fully-accredited Indiana college or university and must maintain a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.8 on a 4.0 scale. This year's princesses have a cumulative grade point average of 3.40.

Sponsors for the 500 Festival Princess Program include WTHR-TV 13 and G. Thrapp Jewelers. Apparel and accessory providers include The Secret Ingredient, Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Vera Bradley.

The 2013 500 Festival Princesses, Indiana hometown, college or university and area of study are as follows (in alphabetical order):

* Marisa Beaty, Muncie, Butler University (Class of 2013), majoring in Physician Assistant Studies

* Allie Beckman, Jasper, IUPUI (Class of 2013), majoring in Biology

* Taylor Blackburn, Mitchell, Indiana University (Class of 2015), majoring in Sports Communication Broadcasting

* Erika Burghardt, Mulberry, Indiana University (Class of 2014), majoring in Psychology and Communication

* Nicolette Crouch, Indianapolis, Purdue University (Class of 2014), majoring in Economics

* Sarah Dapper, Indianapolis, Saint Mary's College, Notre Dame (Class of 2015), majoring in Nursing

* Makenzie Dick, Auburn, Indiana Wesleyan University (Class of 2014), majoring in Psychology and Addictions Counseling

* Becca Duggan, Indianapolis, Purdue University (Class of 2014), majoring in Speech Language Hearing Sciences

* Bailey Farrer, Royal Center, Purdue University (Class of 2015), majoring in Animal Sciences

* Sarah Ferry, Indianapolis, Butler University (Class of 2013), majoring in Communication * Sciences and Disorders

* Jordan Gill, Columbus, Indiana University (Class of 2013), majoring in Marketing and Apparel Merchandising

* Jill Griffin, Cutler, Purdue University (Class of 2014), majoring in Agribusiness Management

* Whitney Hamblin, Carmel, Ball State University (Class of 2014), majoring in Visual Communications

* Erika Hess, Indianapolis, Ball State University (Class of 2013), majoring Information Systems

* Lauren Hines, Greenwood, Anderson University (Class of 2016), majoring in Nursing

* Sarah Hurdle, Fishers, Indiana University (Class of 2013), majoring in Political Science and French

* Allison Jacob, Indianapolis, Ball State University (Class of 2014), majoring in Public Relations and Communication

* Fayth Kalb, Fishers, Indiana University (Class of 2013), majoring in Human Biology and Psychology

* Lauren Karmire, Shelbyville, Butler University (Class of 2017), majoring in Pharmacy

* Blair Martin, Indianapolis, Indiana University (Class of 2014), majoring in Political Science and Telecommunication

* Marlena Mathis, Greenwood, IUPUI (Class of 2013), majoring in Nursing

* Haley Mummert, Flora, Purdue University (Class of 2013), majoring in Management

* Codie Myers, Washington, IUPUI (Class of 2015), majoring in Nursing

* Molly Newell, Indianapolis, Indiana University (Class of 2013), majoring in French and International Studies

* Alexandra Norris, Carmel, Butler University (Class of 2014), majoring in Communication Sciences and Disorders

* Ellen Plew, Westfield, Indiana University (Class of 2015), majoring in Dietetics

* Morgan Reith, Brownsburg, University of Southern Indiana (Class of 2013), majoring in Advertising and Public Relations

* Natalie Russell, Indianapolis, Purdue University (Class of 2013), majoring in Mass Communication - Broadcasting

* Kelsey Sager, Fishers, Purdue University (Class of 2013), majoring in Elementary Education

* Emily Smith, Noblesville, Purdue University (Class of 2013), majoring in English

* Allison Storm, Indianapolis, Purdue University (Class of 2014), majoring in Business and Retail Management

* Katherine Susemichel, Brownsburg, Purdue University (Class of 2013), majoring in Communication: Public Relations

* Sydney Willmann, Hartford City, IUPUI (Class of 2014), majoring in Journalism, Political Science, and Pre-Law

One of these young women will be selected as the 2013 500 Festival Queen and receive a $2,500 scholarship. The queen will be crowned May 18 during the 500 Festival Breakfast at the Brickyard, presented by ProLiance Energy, at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

To learn more about 500 Festival events and volunteer opportunities, please visit www.500festival.com, or contact the 500 Festival at (317) 927-3378.

The mission of the 500 Festival is to advocate and celebrate the spirit, heritage and legacy of the Indianapolis 500®. Through social, cultural and educational events and programs, the 500 Festival enhances the quality of life for all citizens of our communities.
The 500 Festival, a not-for-profit volunteer organization, was created in 1957 to organize civic events celebrating the greatest race in the world. Over the past 56 years, the 500 Festival has grown to become one of the largest festivals in the nation.

Last year, more than 500,000 Hoosiers and visitors participated in nearly 50 events and programs throughout the month of May. Whether they were athletes running the Mini, fourth grade students participating in the Education Program, families enjoying the state's largest festival for kids or spectators being dazzled by one of the nation's premier parades, they were there, celebrating the legacy.



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