Boatwright gives keynote speech at Tonganoxie Chamber event
Danni Boatwright reminisced about her hometown, shared her continued pride for the community and even got a bit emotional talking about family and friends.
The clothing store owner who has created a line of sports team attire gave the keynote speech at last week’s Tonganoxie Chamber of Commerce Awards Banquet.
Boatwright spoke Wednesday, May 18, at the third annual installment of the celebration, which recognized local residents for their efforts in the previous year.
Known for her success as Miss Kansas in beauty pageants in the 1990s and winner of CBS’ “Survivor: Guatemala” in 2005, Boatwright started a clothing line for women to be able to show their fandom for all sports teams, from little leagues to the professional teams, and allow moms to create customized game day gear for their children’s teams.
Enter Sideline Chic, which now also is a Bonner Springs storefront she co-owns.
Sideline Chic provides fan apparel for many specific teams, with licensing for several collegiate teams, including Kansas University and Kansas State University, and Kansas City shirts themed to the metro’s professional baseball, football and soccer teams.
Their collegiate line has allowed them to be carried in major sports chain store Scheels, at its locations in Overland Park as well as Lincoln, Neb.; Des Moines and Cedar Falls, Iowa; and Fargo, N.D.
Sideline Chic shirts also can be found in smaller boutiques throughout the metro area — The Pink Zebra was one of those boutiques.
Boatwright said there were times in owning her business she wondered whether it was worth it, but she continued through prayer and determination, and it has become a successful business.
“Winning a World Series really helps,” Boatwright later joked. “I’m not gonna lie.”
Boatwright referred to the Kansas City Royals helping T-shirt sales with their World Series championship run last year.
She also mentioned her pride in Tonganoxie coming out during her time competing on "Survivor." She relayed a story of conversations with another contestant from New York. He said he was proud of where he was from, but said that after hearing Boatwright tell of Tonganoxie, he was going to take his family on a vacation to Kansas.
And her speech wasn’t complete with talking about what makes her most proud: her family, retired Kansas City Chief Casey Wiegmann and children Bo and Stone.
In closing, she spoke of being pillars of inspiration for others who need it in their own journeys and thanked Tonganoxie for offering her so much support through the years.
Gambino’s Pizza was named the 2016 Business of the Year, as Gambino’s owner Ryan Bodin accepted the award.
Tonganoxie Police Chief Jeff Brandau was named Citizen of the Year.
Also during the awards portion of the event, Tonganoxie USD 464 Superintendent Lyn Rantz recognized Missy Miller, Tonganoxie Elementary School Teacher of the Year, and Jessica Goode, Secondary Teacher of the Year.
Brandau handed out various awards to his officers for their work.
Lt Billy Naff, Sgt. Mike Krauze and officer Jason Colobong all won Gold Awards.
Sgt. Jarrod Gill, Sgt. Tony Schuberger, officer Chris Haney and Colobong all won Bronze Awards.
K-9 officer Chief, the department’s police dog, earned the Bone Award.
Ken Tallent catered the meal and the Tonganoxie City Fire Department displayed its large flag in the West Haven parking lot for the duration of the event.