Baby Bonanza brings moms, infants, vendors together

From left, moms Misty Byland, Erin Risse and Lucy Best chat at Sunday’s 3rd annual Baby Bonanza at Capitol Plaza Hotel with their respective babies: Ava, 2 months; Henley, 1 month; and Cash, 3 months. The Jefferson City women are friends and first-time mothers.

From left, moms Misty Byland, Erin Risse and Lucy Best chat at Sunday’s 3rd annual Baby Bonanza at Capitol Plaza Hotel with their respective babies: Ava, 2 months; Henley, 1 month; and Cash, 3 months. The Jefferson City women are friends and first-time mothers.

Babies were the stars of the show at Sunday’s Baby Bonanza at Capitol Plaza Hotel. Some competed to be the cutest and fastest, while some of the others napped or fussed as they tagged along with their moms.

About 350 area residents — not including the babies — attended the 3rd annual Baby Bonanza, which featured more than 30 vendors offering everything from free formula to a necklace for mom that doubles as a teething ring.

Brylee Marie Bolton, the 1-year-old daughter of Tylor Bolton and Ashley Wilson of Jefferson City, won the News Tribune’s Cutest Baby Contest, sponsored by the Women’s Clinic of JCMG.

The public decided the winner by picking from 139 entrants online. The three finalists came onto the stage with their parents at Sunday’s event before the winner was announced. Brylee and her parents won a $300 photography package from JP Gallery.

Other events included various heats of a crawling contest and a baby fashion show.

In one breakout room at the event, expectant moms learned about the birthing process.

Next door, expectant dads enjoyed food and drinks while learning about their upcoming roles.

“It’s a lot easier for an expectant father to feel comfortable asking some of the more personal questions when he’s surrounded by just a bunch of guys sitting around eating pizza and drinking beer,” said Jeff Berendzen, one of the facilitators.

The Baby Bonanza event was sponsored by Jefferson City Medical Group, St. Mary’s Health Center and Whaley’s Mommy & Me. Proceeds benefit March of Dimes.

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