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Southwest Missouri News--Branson

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by Carol Harris, Branson area, and Marti Attoun, Joplin area

Jim Stafford has announced that he will debut a new song, "Don't Be Chicken When It's Time to Crow," and a new theme for his 1999 show in a special presentation with the Miss USA delegates Jan. 26.

Plans are for the pageant delegates to appear on stage with Stafford in the opening segment of his show. Miss USA Pageant representatives and CBS will film the 7 p.m. event. The delegates will make several appearances during their two-week stay in Branson prior to the Feb. 5 live telecast at The Grand Palace.

Syncor Special Events Management spokespersons for The Grand Palace said business executive Donald Trump is also scheduled to appear at a VIP buffet reception and lunch meeting with local businesspeople during his Branson trip. Trump and CBS are partners in The Miss Universe Organization, the producer of Miss Universe, Miss USA and Miss Teen USA.

State governors, corporate executives and other individuals are being sought to bid on 51 gifts, one donated by each delegate of the Miss USA Pageant, in a silent auction to benefit the Branson Arts Council Inc.

The gifts, which range from fine art and vacation packages to sports memorabilia and television appearances, will be on view 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Jan. 22-26 and 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Jan. 27 on the mezzanine level of The Grand Palace. Winning bids will be announced at 8 p.m. Jan. 27.

A directory of gifts and bid forms are available, and bids can be mailed, faxed or placed in person. For more information, call the Branson Arts Council at 336-4255.

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