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Voting opens for nationwide model search

Submitted photo.

Women from across the country have entered Maurices Main Street Model Search, competing to be among 12 finalists chosen to model for Maurices in upcoming fall, holiday and spring clothing campaigns.

The top 12 models will each receive a photo shoot at an iconic fashion shoot destination and national exposure at Maurices locations,, mailers and social media.

They will also be awarded a $1,500 Maurices gift card and a $7,500 charitable makeover for a nonprofit in their hometowns.

Area women entered in the contest include Leanne Walker, 33, of River Falls; Emily Deiss, 19, of Roberts; Shannon Nichols, 23, River Falls; Julia Northwick, 25, of Hudson; Evangeline Manske, 36, Hammond; Lindsay Greening, 21, of New Richmond; and Alexandra Sutton, 21, of Baldwin.

This is the second year the national women's clothing retailer has held the contest. The next stage in the 2012 search is online voting, which will trim the more than 1,500 entries to the top 100.

"We were impressed by the more than 48,000 voters that participated last year and hope to see just as many, if not more, this year," said Brad Hartmann, Maurices vice president of marketing. "We're inviting everyone, whether they know a contestant or not, to help us find the next Maurices Main Street Models by voting for contestants they feel represent what the Maurices brand is all about: fashion, fun and giving back."

Now through March 19, people can visit to view the contestants, read their biography, and vote once a day for their favorite.

Contestants are searchable by name, hometown, state, college, occupation and more. Every time a person votes, they will receive a surprise coupon offer from Maurices and be entered for a chance to win as much as $1,000 in Maurices gift cards.

Following the online voting, the top 100 contestants will create videos about why they should be a Maurices Main Street Model. Maurices will then select 20 of these women to attend a casting call in Minneapolis, Minn., the week of April 16.

A judging panel from Maurices, including a celebrity judge and stylist Christopher Straub from Lifetime's "Project Runway," will select the 12 winners, who will be announced on April 23.

The 12 winning models will be featured in a seasonal campaign, receive a $1,500 Maurices gift card, and help designate which nonprofit organization in her community should receive a $7,500 charitable makeover.