First Place Winner of the National Abraham Lincoln Competition
Dennis Boggs waves to the crowd after winning First Place for the National Abraham Lincoln Look Alike & Oratorical Competition on the Central Park Stage during Decatur Celebration in Decatur, Illinois
DECATUR, IL - After defeating 11 other Lincoln presenters, Dennis Boggs of Nashville, Tennessee, as 1st Place Winner, Boggs was awarded a check in the amount of $1,600.00, as well as being presented with a framed certificate stating: "National Abraham Lincoln Look Alike & Oratorical Competition... The perfect representative of our 16th President, Abraham Lincoln... First Place." The contestants came from all over the nation for the competition and were a part of the Celebration's opening ceremonies Friday. Overall there were about 300,000 spectators. The contest was one of the main attractions celebrating the weekend's theme, "Welcome Home, Mr. Lincoln." All of the Lincolns were asked questions and had three minutes to speak to the audience. The full-time Lincoln presenter has been at it for 17 years and has performed in 33 states, but this was his first visit to Decatur, and he hoped to find some free time to visit the historic Lincoln sites around Decatur. Boggs started reading about the 16th president more than 25 years ago. Boggs added, "If you read Lincoln, and if there's a little Lincoln in you, he will draw you into further study."