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Marengo Maids Great Ambassadors for County

The six young women serving as Marengo Maids have responsibilities that are more complex than meet the eye. Just becoming a Marengo Maid takes effort.

These maids must go through a process of application, maintain a 3.0 grade point average or better and get references from teachers or Marengo County Historical Society members. Traci Pearson, the sponsor for the 2008 Maids, said these youngsters have some very adult tasks and responsibilities during their yearlong reign. “The Marengo Maids serve as hostesses to the Marengo County Historical Society and they help to promote tourism in Marengo County,” she said.

While many remember the Maids as those dressed in antebellum costume during Christmas in the Canebrake, welcoming visitors to Christmas on the River, most don’t realize theirs is a year-long commitment to participate in a number of events and serve as ambassadors for the area from October, when they are selected for the honor, until the following October. These young women are chosen from those who meet the criteria and who are in the 10th, 11th, or 12th grade.

Pearson said these youths have already participated in an informal workshop with Linden Mayor Mitzi Gates, who “gave the girls tips on ‘mingling’ with crowds, while serving as hostesses of Marengo County Historical Society.”

On Oct. 23, these young women served as hostesses to the Marengo County Historical Society for the annual membership party at Lyon Hall. In November, the girls participated in an etiquette class at Mama Nems’ Bistro in Thomaston. The late Chef Dodd Orten, who was the head chef at the restaurant, and Kathryn Friday of the Marengo County Auburn Extension Office, led the exercise.

Just this month, the youths served as hostesses at Bluff Hall and Lyon Hall during the Christmas on the River festivities and walked in the Linden Christmas Parade. While the girls were in Linden, some of them visited the residents of the Marengo County Nursing Home. “After the parade, they were invited into the lovely home of Lorraine Wilkerson for some welcome hot chocolate and cookies,” Pearson said.

The girls will continue their service at various functions until next fall, each of them wearing a beautifully created costume tailored especially for them.

The young women serving as this year’s Marengo Maids are listed below.

Kaitlyn Freeman is the daughter of Mark and Dana Freeman. She is a sophomore at Demopolis High School. Kaitlyn is a member of the DHS Dance Team, DECA, and Anchor Club. She attends First United Methodist Church, Demopolis. Kaitlyn enjoys reading, dancing, art, and travel.

Hillary Thomas is the daughter of Jennifer Schroeder. She is a sophomore at Demopolis High School. Hillary is a member of Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Canebreak Players, Science Olympiad, DTD’s, and Key Club. She attends First Baptist Church, Demopolis where she is a member of the youth group and acteens.

Jennie Hurst is the daughter of Harris and Traci Hurst. She is a sophomore at Demopolis High School. Jennie is a member of Fellowship of Christian Athletes, yearbook staff, and she is the DHS Tiger Mascot. She attends First United Methodist Church, Demopolis where she leads Praise music and is very active in her youth group.

Morgan Cooper is the daughter of Robert and Rhonda Cooper. She is a sophomore at Demopolis High School. Morgan is a member of DHS Student Government, Anchor Club, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, DECA, DHS Marching and Concert Band, Canebrake Players, Science Olympiad, Ballet, and DHS Choir. She attends First Baptist Church, Demopolis where she is a member of the girls’ ensemble.

Olivia Brooker is the daughter of Johnny and Chrissy Brooker. She is a sophomore at Demopolis High School. Olivia participated in the YOUth Lead Program, National Youth Leadership Forum, Tiger Arts Guild, Drama Club, Choir, Key Club, Canebrake Players, and A/B Honor Roll. She attends St. Leo the Great Catholic Church.

Victoria Barley is the daughter of Bill and Vanessa Barley. She is a senior at Demopolis High School where she is a member of Beta Club, DECA, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and Anchor Club. She attends Trinity Church where she is a member of the youth group.