Wanted: Top Mothers in Nederland

NEDERLAND — It’s never too early to begin looking for the perfect present for Mother’s Day.

With just over a month to go, those who know a mother who resides within the Nederland Independent School District can send letters to the Nederland Chamber of Commerce telling them why she deserves to be Mother of the Year.

“Usually we get around 10 submissions,” Nederland Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Diana LaBorde said. “There really are no criteria. We just want to hear about the mother. We want to know about their past and present involvement in family and community services.”

LaBorde said making a selection is always difficult.

“If we could give it to all of them, we would,” she said. “We get some really great letters written about some amazing women.”

LaBorde said a committee of five people read over the letters and the discussions can get “spirited” as members advocate for the mother they feel is most worthy. She said it usually takes about an hour to 90 minutes to make a decision.

Afterwards, the committee gets in touch with the individual who wrote the letter and arrange to surprise the mother with flowers and invitations to give out for an event to recognize her.

Each year, the ceremony takes place the Thursday before Mother’s Day — May 9 this year. The event starts at 5 p.m. at City Hall.

“The mayor is usually there and issues a proclamation for the Mother of the Year,” LaBorde said. “We have cake and punch. We let the person who wrote the letter read it. There is always lots of family and friends. We usually have a big basket of stuff. We like to find out what the mother’s favorite color is and what her likes are. We like to tailor make a gift for her.”

LaBorde said the previous Mother of the Year comes back to crown the new winner.

“It’s usually a nice ceremony,” she said. “It lasts maybe 45 minutes. It’s not long, but it’s really heartfelt.”

The Mother of the Year will also get magnetic stickers for her car and is allowed to ride in all of the city’s parades for the year as well as attend other chamber events.

The deadline to turn in letters is April 25.

Letters should not exceed 250 words.

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