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Miss America Mallory Hagan visits LI Dairy Queen
When customers pulled up to the drive-thru window of the Dairy Queen Chill and Grill in Massapequa on Wednesday afternoon, they were met with a surprising site: A blonde wearing a sparkling crown handed them their order.
No, Dairy Queen wasn’t testing out a new mascot. It was Miss America.
Mallory Hagan, the winner of the 2013 Miss America pageant and current title holder, spent an hour working the drive-thru and the front counter at Long Island’s only Dairy Queen.
“It’s been a very long time since I’ve been in a DQ,” said Hagan, 24, an Alabama native who now lives in Brooklyn.
The purpose of Hagan’s visit was to promote “Miracle Treat Day,” which will take place Thursday. For every Blizzard dessert that the Massapequa Dairy Queen sells Thursday, $2 will be donated to the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals in the area.
As a corporate sponsor, Dairy Queen has raised $97 million for CMHN since 1984, said Laura Maier, 34, co-owner of the Massapequa DQ, which opened on June 10.
“We’ll probably hit the $100 million mark this year,” she added.
In addition to the money her business raises tomorrow for CMNH, Maier also made a personal donation of $2,500 to the Steven and Alexandra Cohen Children’s Medical Center in New Hyde Park, where CMNH’s main Long Island campus is located. The mother of two boys -- Ryan, 3, and Brayden, 5 -- said she was inspired by her children and also her background in health care. She worked for CMHN for 12 years before opening up the Dairy Queen.
“It’s something I always wanted to do,” she said.
As Miss America, Hagan is the national ambassador for CMNH. She pointed out that all the money that the Massapequa Dairy Queen raises Thursday will go directly to local hospitals.
“The money stays in the area, so that means people are actually donating to their community,” she said.
Since Long Island did not have a Dairy Queen until Maier opened up her store, this will be the first time that local hospitals will receive these funds, according to Tracie Svatkowski, CMNH’s manager for development in Long Island. In addition to its New Hyde Park campus, CMNH also has units in Huntington Hospital and Southside Hospital in Bay Shore, and clinics and outpatient treatment facilities across Long Island.
The money CMNH receives from corporate sponsors like Dairy Queen is used to fund programs not in its budget including counseling for patients undergoing procedures and their families, playrooms, and music and art therapy, Svatkowski said.
“This is our first miracle treat day and we are very excited about it,” she added. “This money is going to be put to really good use.”