Sangerville woman bested in national toilet paper contest

By Diana Bowley, BDN Staff
Posted Dec. 31, 2010, at 12:42 p.m.

SANGERVILLE, Maine — Jenny Haskell won the toilet paper stacking contest in Charmin’s national “Enjoy the Go” contest Wednesday in New York City, but admits she stank in the mummy wrap competition, leading to defeat in her bid to be Charmin’s queen.

Alabama’s contestant won the grand prize, but the Sangerville woman said Friday she was extremely happy with her first trip to the Big Apple.

“It was a worthwhile contest, and it was just so much fun,” Haskell said.

After seeing the contest advertised on Facebook in November, Haskell entered it and won the state competition. That meant an all-expenses-paid trip for two to New York City from Dec. 27-29, a $500 gift card, and a chance to compete against four other state winners in a national competition that carried a $50,000 prize.

Unwilling to let the recent blizzard interfere with her chance to get to the Big Apple, Haskell traveled Sunday to Portland and stayed overnight. On Monday morning, she met up with her guest, her cousin Wanda Prunty of Portland, and the pair left Maine on Amtrak, since their scheduled flight had been canceled.

Haskell said a chauffeur picked them up at Penn Station in New York and took them to the Marriott Marquis in Times Square, where they were to stay.

“I was the only contestant to make it there on the [designated] day,” she said. Because of the remnants from the blizzard, the other contestants had to fly into Pennsylvania and chauffeurs drove them to New York on Tuesday morning. Because of that delay, the contest was moved from Tuesday to Wednesday.

Since Haskell did not have to meet with Charmin officials until noon Tuesday, she wasted no time.

“We immediately got dressed and went out and started exploring New York,” she said. “The first thing we did Tuesday morning is we went to the Charmin restrooms.”

Window displays in many storefronts in Times Square had been converted into Charmin restrooms that depicted the sights of a handful of states, including Maine, she said.

After Tuesday’s meeting with Charmin officials to learn more about the competition, which involved toilet paper trivia, toilet paper stacking and tossing, and mummy wrapping, the contestants left for more sightseeing.

“We just went and explored New York some more,” Haskell said. “We went to Rockefeller Center, Bryant Park, Macy’s and Grand Central Station.”

On Wednesday morning, a hairstylist and makeup artist worked on the contestants, because the event was going to be televised locally. After breakfast, emcee Jane Lynch of TV’s “Glee” arrived and the contests began.

“I was very nervous and hot being under those bright lights,” Haskell said.

Haskell said she won the stacking competition, but it was Alabama’s contestant who won the other contests, including the mummy wrap, which caused Haskell the most grief.

“We had to wrap our friends in toilet paper,” Haskell said. “It wasn’t so much they had to really look like a mummy. You had to use a whole roll of toilet paper, but I got so dizzy. We were all running around our people because our people couldn’t move.”

Despite the dizzy spell, Haskell said she had a lot of fun during the competition and is thankful for the trip, even if it did occur during a blizzard.

Haskell said she still chuckles as she recalls people in New York City taking photographs of one another standing on the big snowdrifts and then sliding down them just for fun.

“New York was having a very hard time with that snow, and it was a big deal for them,” she said.

Haskell also marveled that she and her cousin never got lost.

“I have a really bad sense of direction and my cousin has a really bad dyslexia problem, so we kind of laughed that we were lucky we made it to New York, through New York and back from New York,” she said.

For now, Haskell said she is content being Maine’s queen of the “Enjoy the Go.”

“I couldn’t really imagine somebody giving me $50,000 anyway,” she said.

After seeing the contest advertised on Facebook in November, Haskell entered it and won the state competition. That meant an all-expenses-paid trip for two to New York City from Dec. 27-29, a $500 gift card, and a chance to compete against four other state winners in a national competition that carried a $50,000 prize.

Unwilling to let the recent blizzard interfere with her chance to get to the Big Apple, Haskell traveled Sunday to Portland and stayed overnight. On Monday morning, she met up with her guest, her cousin Wanda Prunty of Portland, and the pair left Maine via Amtrak since their scheduled flight had been canceled.

Haskell said a chauffeur picked them up at the train station in New York City and took them to the Marriott Marquis in Times Square, where they were to stay.

“I was the only contestant to make it there on the [designated] day,” she said. Because of the remnants from the blizzard, the other contestants had to fly into Pennsylvania and chauffeurs drove them to New York on Tuesday morning. Because of that delay, the contest was moved from Tuesday to Wednesday.

Since Haskell did not have to meet with Charmin officials until noon Tuesday, she wasted no time.

“We immediately got dressed and went out and started exploring New York,” she said. “The first thing we did Tuesday morning is we went to the Charmin restrooms.”

Window displays in many storefronts in Times Square had been converted into Charmin restrooms that depicted the sights of a handful of states, including Maine, she explained.

After Tuesday’s meeting with Charmin officials to learn more about the competition — which involved toilet paper trivia, toilet paper stacking and tossing, and mummy wrapping — the contestants left for more sightseeing.

“We just went and explored New York some more,” Haskell said. “We went to Rockefeller Center, Bryant Park, Macy’s and Grand Central Station.”

On Wednesday morning, a hairstylist and makeup artist were on hand because the event was going to be televised locally. After breakfast, emcee Jane Lynch of “Glee” arrived and the contests began.

“I was very nervous and hot being under those bright lights,” Haskell recalled.

Haskell said she won the stacking competition, but it was Alabama’s contestant who won the other contests, including the mummy wrap, which caused Haskell the most grief.

“We had to wrap our friends in toilet paper,” Haskell said. “It wasn’t so much they had to really look like a mummy. You had to use a whole roll of toilet paper, but I got so dizzy. We were all running around our people because our people couldn’t move.”

Despite the dizzy spell, Haskell said she had a lot of fun during the competition and is thankful for the trip even if it did occur during a blizzard.

Haskell said she still chuckles as she recalls people in New York City taking photographs of one another standing on the big snowdrifts and then sliding down them just for fun.

“New York was having a very hard time with that snow and it was a big deal for them,” she said.

Haskell also marveled that she and her cousin never got lost.

“I have a really bad sense of direction and my cousin has a really bad dyslexia problem, so we kind of laughed that we were lucky we made it to New York, through New York, and back from New York,” Haskell said.

For now, Haskell said she is content being Maine’s queen of the “Enjoy the Go.”

“I couldn’t really imagine somebody giving me $50,000 anyway,” she said.

http://bangordailynews.com/2010/12/31/news/sangerville-woman-bested-in-national-toilet-paper-contest/ printed on November 26, 2014