Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Sponsor Spotlight!

MANY MANY thanks to Brett at Fischer's Tuxedos for sponsoring Mr. Pennsylvania Raymond Novak's tuxedo rental for finals night at Mrs. America! We thank you SO MUCH for your generosity!

Be sure to visit them on the web at http://fischerstuxedo.com/, in person at 512 Broad Street in Quakertown, PA, or give them a call at 215-536-5137 next time you have a formalwear need. I will post photos from Ray's fitting while we are still in town and prior to hitting the stage and while on stage in Vegas. Stay tuned!


Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Very quickly...

I am posting my sincere appreciation to Sophia Young of Say Creative Photography for updating my ad page for the Mrs. America program book.  Additional thanks to Fred Wright for his support as director of the 2015 pageant, Joanne Egan Bauer for her unwavering support of all of my endeavors (check out Joanne Jackson for a Better Lehigh County to stay up to date on her bid for Lehigh County Commissioner), Just Born, Inc. for providing Goldenberg's Peanut Chews to each delegate as my gift from Pennsylvania, and Pamela Ptak, owner of Arts and Fashion Institute for custom-fitting my Rachel Allan gown obtained through Norieta Stephanos of My Crowning Closet!  Last but not least, my amazingly supportive husband, Raymond Novak and his parents (owners of Novak Pheasantry) and of course the children, Aubrey & Courtney.


Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Been busy!

Trumbauersville Community Day 
State Representative Craig Staats
District 145
Hi everyone!

It's been over three months since I posted (that's 1/4 of a year!) and even my last post was just the generic press release since being crowned Mrs. Pennsylvania America 2015, so an update is definitely in order and right here for those who are following!  I chose a list-calendar format in order to share what I've been up to as concisely as possible, linking web- and Facebook-sites appropriately and sharing a smattering of my favorite photos.

Official Appearances:

Friday, May 1st--ZUMBA for Africa, supporting Patty Tunis' mission trip
Tuesday, May 5th--Cinco De ZUMBA at Athleta
Wednesday, May 27th--Launch Party for Stella & Dot Stylist Rosanna Messina at Five Point Bar & Grill in Trumbauersville
Milford Carnival
MTFD President, Shawn Ober
Saturday, June 6th--Trumbauersville Community Day
Friday, June 19th--Milford Township Fire Department Carnival
Sunday, July 12th--Mustang Muscle Car Show, benefitting the Nicole Reppert Foundation
Wednesday, July 15th--Juli Kell's Dance Center Princess Camp Stage Modeling Workshop
Monday, August 3rd--Juli Kell's Dance Center Dance Intensive Modeling Workshops and ZUMBA/ZUMBA Kids classes
Saturday, August 8th--Pets Plus Natural Adoption Center Bensalem Grand Re-opening
Sunday, August 23rd--Pride in the Park 2015
Saturday, September 5th--Lily's Loop 5k, benefitting Lily's Hope Foundation
Saturday, September 12th--Pennsburg Community Day--find me in front of Juli Kell's Dance Center
Friday, September 18th-26th--LAS VEGAS, NV for MRS. AMERICA PAGEANT 9/20-24


Thursday, April 20th--Crown & Banner Photoshoot
Mustang Muscle Car Show
PennMustangs Owner Ric Reppert,
Raymond the Amish Comic
Tuesday, August 4th--Mrs. America Contestant Bio, Agreement, and additional paperwork submitted!
Friday, August 21st--Mrs. America Ad Page submitted!

Personal & Family Events/Volunteerism:

Friday, May 15th--Lehigh University Alumni Weekend Reunionfest
Saturday, May 23rd--Happy Wedding Day Alissa & Derek!
Friday, June 12th--Juli Kell's Dance Center Dress Rehearsal
Saturday, June 13th--Make-A-Wish Intake Meeting for Jayce!
Sunday, June 14th--Juli Kell's Dance Center Dance Recital Performance & Kids' Room Helper
Saturday, June 25th & Sunday, June 26th--Les Mills BODYFLOW Initial Training
Saturday, August 8th--Happy Graduation Nichole!
Friday, August 21st-Sunday, August 23rd--Visit sorority sister and fellow Lehigh alum Jessica in Pittsburgh for Pirates games!

Pets Plus Natural Bensalem
Adoption Center Grand Re-opening
Ribbon Cutting
My main focus for the next month and a half will be preparation for nationals and then the national Mrs. America pageant itself.  Some future events have been included in the listing above, so hopefully I will be back to post some favorite photos.  Also remember that the Fabulous Face contest is still occurring and a vote for me is one step closer to securing a spot in the semi-finals at Mrs. America, plus it supports Mrs. America's charities of choice:  Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, and the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.  I appreciate everyone's support, no matter the capacity; I am eternally grateful even for positive thoughts sent my way!


Friday, May 15, 2015


Pennsburg native crowned Mrs. Pennsylvania America 2015

Essington, PA – Mrs. Bucks County 2015 Kate Schartel Novak from Pennsburg was crowned Mrs. Pennsylvania America 2015 at the Clarion Hotel Philadelphia International Airport on Sunday, April 26, 2015. The event, produced by MTAA, LLC, is an official state preliminary to the Mrs. America pageant, to be held in September.

Novak competed three times for the Mrs. Pennsylvania America title, placing second- and first-runner up in previous competitions. Last year’s winner, Amira Hamid Joseph, attended the 2015 pageant to crown her successor.

“I am absolutely thrilled” Novak said.  “To finally become a part of Mrs. America—the original competition for America’s married women—is an honor I unequivocally cherish.”  Novak’s determination to succeed is not just limited to her participation in pageantry, however.

Prior to marriage, Novak obtained both her B.A. in English and her M.Ed. in Secondary Education from Lehigh University in five years while working two jobs, interning, and volunteering. Shortly after graduation in 2005, she realized her dream to dance professionally as a director and member of the Lehigh Valley Outlawz indoor football team’s dance team, the Lady Outlawz.  After teaching in the public school system for almost ten years, she has now returned to school herself in order to become a veterinary technician due to her passion for animal health and welfare.  She is currently a travel agent and ZUMBA fitness instructor, both of which call upon her love for event planning and attention to detail.

Novak’s faith informs her volunteer endeavors through Unitarian Universalism’s Second Principle:  Justice, Equity, and Compassion in Human Relations.  She devotes time, talent, and funds to a variety of causes, as she and her husband, Ray, are Wish Granters for the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Greater Pennsylvania and Southern West Virginia, and can be found frequenting Lehigh’s alumni events, as Kate has served on Lehigh’s Young Alumni Council, Alumni Admissions Outreach, and reunion planning committees.

Both Novaks also support additional charities through a fairly newfound interest in running, including organizations that support children’s cancer prevention/education and research for the cure and keeping the arts alive in local communities.  Additionally, Kate passionately advocates for women’s health initiatives and LGBT equality.

As for her involvement in pageantry, Novak explains, “Competing is a way in which women can put themselves to the test.  Preparing for a pageant requires women to be extremely honest with themselves about where they stand as wives, mothers, career women, community leaders, and public servants.  The judging process can be very subjective, so it’s important to determine the ‘why’ beyond the ‘win’ and look at preparation as a growth process.  I have grown and continue to grow in countless ways because of my involvement in pageantry, and am grateful beyond words for the opportunities it has presented.”

For more information about the Mrs. Pennsylvania America pageant, please visit http://www.mrspennsylvania.com. To book Mrs. Pennsylvania America 2015 for your event, please email mrspaamerica2015@gmail.com.


Thursday, April 16, 2015

Back at it...

I'll very quickly apologize for taking nearly six months to update and blame it on my career change:  My last post in October disclaimed that I wouldn't be posting again until after November, and then in December I resigned from my teaching position in order to return to school and become a veterinary technician while also focusing more fully on teaching ZUMBA fitness and planning events and selling travel with Sail Away Events & Travel.  Countless friends and family were shocked but those close to me know I've always had a heart for animal health and welfare and have kept many varied pets over the years, so this has been quite a natural transition for me.  Then, somewhere in the middle of it all, Ray and I decided I would compete for Mrs. Pennsylvania America on April 26th.  It's t-minus nine days to the pageant and I am steadily making progress toward feeling fully prepared.  I have had a wonderful time preparing this time around and like I stated in a recent Facebook post which I shared from fellow contestant Teena Handline, will be competing against no one but myself, especially since my life has changed so drastically in such a short amount of time.

Other than the career change, here is an as-brief-as-I-can-make-it timeline of the last few months:

...took us to Yankee Stadium for the 150th Lehigh-Lafayette game and to Negril, Jamaica for a half-familiarization/half-leisure trip to Couples Swept Away.  Ray and I cooked Thanksgiving dinner for twelve the day before we left, so we were blessed enough to enjoy time with family in addtion to getting away.

...involved traditional holiday preparations.  We cooked again and had a truly joyous Christmas and New Year's.

...saw the very sad passing of my grandfather-in-law (he was 90!) and my mother-in-law's ensuing need to take care of funeral arrangements and the estate.  This meant I spent some of my newfound time off helping her out with her daycare so she could meet with family and lawyers.  While it was a sad time, celebrating his very active life right through his 90th year made for some happy memories with family.

In February,
...we raised over $5000 as a part of Team ZUMBA Love for the Philly Cupid Undie Run benefiting the Children's Tumor Foundation.  I was also assigned a new Wish Kid for Make-a-Wish and participated as a ZUMBA instructor in the 2015 Fight for Sam, for which we raised over $30,000 (matched by a generous business owner for a total of over $60,000) for the Pediatric Cancer Foundation of the Lehigh Valley.  Finally, I brought home a mini lop-eared bunny to join our zoo because I always wanted one and it reminded me of my childhood stuffed bunny that still sits next to my pillow at night.

...was a little work in the first half while my in-laws went to Florida and straight-up pageant prep mode in the second half with some fun activities in between.  I turned 33 (oh my) on March 4th and my husband brought home a new German Shorthair puppy by the end of the week who we named Maggie.  My aunt/Godmother announced her candidacy for Lehigh County Commissioner at a Trunk Show my cousin (her daughter) organized while visiting from North Carolina.  The show spread awareness of the campaign and benefitted animal rescues throughout the Lehigh Valley.  I was assigned another Wish Kid so that I have two going at the same time right now, and I spent a weekend in Manhattan with my big sister from Chi Omega, Shira, who I hadn't seen for seven years!  It was a deliriously happy reunion and we got some much-needed catching up accomplished while spending time in my favorite city in the world.

April (shoot, that's now!)
...has involved more pageant prep, including finalizing headshots, ad pages, re-touching my permanent make-up and the healing involved in that, skin care, clean-eating, amping up the workouts, etc. etc.  I got to spend another day in Manhattan compliments of my aunt's Christmas gift to us, this time with my in-laws and Ray.  We saw Finding Neverland and enjoyed lunch in Little Italy, which is no small task for someone trying to eat clean during pageant prep mode!  Nonetheless, the show was absolutely phenomenal and I cried during every scene for one reason/emotion or another.  I also met Lynn Cohen, who played Magda in Sex and the City and Mags in Hunger Games:  Catching Fire.  She was gracious enough to take a selfie with me and I was utterly starstruck between that and watching Kelsey Grammer (Cheers, Frasier) and Matthew Morrison (Glee) perform.  The next day I went to Harrisburg for a Day of Action for Women's Health, meeting with Representative Staats himself and Senator Mensch's Chief of Staff to lobby for bills that are a part of the Women's Health Agenda, including those addressing pay equity and workplace accommodations for pregnant women and nursing mothers.

So that's it!  I probably won't post again until well after the competition, when I will have had some time to reflect on the experience and evaluate my personal successes and areas for improvement.  I'm looking forward to a beautiful experience, and am eager to share in the journey with my fellow contestants!



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