East Bay

Pleasanton Students to Hold ‘Mr. Amador' Beauty Pageant for Charity

What do you get when you put 10 high school junior and senior boys in one room with 80s music and a chorus of girl coaches?

You get a lot of money for charity and some crazy "footloose" action.

Several East Bay teens recently spent a school night dancing to their parents oldies in hopes of snagging the prized title of "Mr. Amador" -- a crown that comes with a big commitment and a heavy dose of compassion.

"The goal is to help the community," contestant Connor Dubiel said. "I think sometimes you have to take a step back and realize our problems are minimal, we have a math test and other people are having life problems."

Since October, Dubiel and fellow contestant Nate Lau, along with eight other contestants and some other 30 teens from Pleasanton's Amador Valley High School have put on countless fundraisers and held weekly practices to raise funds for the George Mark Children's House in San Leandro.

The George Mark Children's House is a hospice providing a loving space for terminally ill children and their families.

"Just going to (George Mark Children's House) I've seen there is so much more than high school that we can make a difference," said Alyssa McFarlane, who co-directs the Mr. Amador event.

The girls run the show, while the boys vy for the spotlight in an all-male beauty pageant. The event caps off with a standing-room only live auction.

"At the end they have to make a date and people bid for them, then go on the date," said Sara Kenning, who co-directs Mr. Amador. "It's a really fun time."

This year's event marks the 13th year of the Mr. Amador pageant. Last year, the kids raised $120,000. The pageants are scheduled to take place on Monday.

For more information, visit the Mr. Amador website.

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