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Clini Out-Steps Competition to Take Mr. Merrimack Title

Sara Davies, ’13, Staff Writer

They came out in Speedos, did their turn in front of the judges, then disappeared backstage. When they reemerged, one wore a hula skirt; the next sported a cowboy hat, and a third suspenders—all showing a whole lot of skin.

This year’s Mr. Merrimack put the swag on display, as five of the school’s finest gentlemen—seniors Mike Troy, Sam Brown, Ryan Pinette, and Nick Clini, and sophomore Ben Knox – vied for the coveted crown, competing in the traditional battlefields of swimsuit, talent, evening dress, and questions and answers. Hosted by students Matthew Kirkham and Yagul Ganendran, the Rogers Center for the Arts certainly drew a great and enthusiastic crowd. The panel of five judges placed three of the five contestants, with the crown going to Nick Clini.

The talent portion included a Whitney Huston memorial sung by Ryan Pinette accompanied by his acoustic guitar and Mackapella toward the end. Sam Brown wowed the audience with his freestyle rap, while Mike Troy followed with a rap and dance act to Will Smith’s “Wild, Wild West.” Ben Knox taught the audience basic self defense methods that put Sandra Bullock to shame. Last but certainly not least was Clini’s performance with friends Derek Kane and Ryan Kurtz. The trio put on a dance act with white, faceless masks and matching attire that dazzled the audience with swift moves and coordination.

As the end neared, the gentlemen came out in their finest evening garb accompanied by their escort of choice, girlfriend or mom. They were each asked one question ranging from their greatest role model to what they would do with $1 million.
As the tension and nerves started to rise, the judges made their decision and the crowning began. In third place winning a $25 gift card, was Sam Brown, in second place winning a $50 gift card was Ryan Pinette, and finally Clini, taking home a $75 gift card, vintage bicycle, sash, and the crown the new Mr. Merrimack said, “I had a great time with Mr. Merrimack and wanted to go into it having fun. My favorite part was our dance routine we came up with. We worked really hard on it.”

His hard work certainly showed as many people, including the judges, said the dance routine was the most impressive part of the contest. Clini aspires to take his dancing talent to the next level and be on the hit reality television series America’s Best Dance Crew. All contestants did a phenomenal job and certainly had the audience cheering and laughing all the way through. There was fun had by all including the audience, judges, and above all the contestants. Be sure to come to next year’s Mr. Merrimack 2013 for even more laughs and enjoyment.

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