Fort Mill Times

Move over, Tina Fey

Melanie Conger and Suzanne Smith are having a lot of fun because of their resemblance to Gov. Sarah Palin.
Melanie Conger and Suzanne Smith are having a lot of fun because of their resemblance to Gov. Sarah Palin.

Sarah Palin may not have visited York County, but at least two local women have received a lot of double takes lately.

When Suzanne Smith, a newcomer to the Fort Mill area, went to her job as a waitress with her hair pulled up and glasses on, it didn't take long before customers started calling her "Sarah," as in the first name of the Alaska governor and Republican candidate for vice president who became an overnight sensation.Smith actually has more in common with Palin than high cheekbones. She, too, has five children and the youngest was born with Down syndrome. And, like Palin, who appeared on "Saturday Night Live" this past week, Smith is having some fun with her sudden rise to celebrity status."It has been a lot of fun with the customers," Smith said. "They love having 'Sarah' serve them lunch."Another local look-alike, Melanie Conger has lived in the Fort Mill and the Lake Wylie areas for many years and is employed as a nurse at Gaston Memorial Hospital in Gastonia."About a month ago, a patient wondered if she was Sarah Palin," said Kathy Zebroski, who works on another floor at the hospital. "She is the spitting image of Sarah Palin and they have some other similarities also. We are having a good time with the patients and our own version of Sarah at the hospital when the patients are wheeled in and see Melanie."Conger lives between Lake Wylie and Clover and also has five children."I have three girls and two boys like Sarah," Conger said. "My oldest was born in 1989 like Sarah's."Just a little more than a month older than Palin, Conger, 44, also competed in and won beauty pageants - as did the governor. Both have earned "Miss Congeniality" awards. And that's not where the similarities end."I, too, played basketball with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and the flute when I was in school," Conger said.There's more."One of my favorite hobbies is fishing and my first boyfriend's name was Todd."But actress and writer Tina Fey's career is safe for the moment. So far, neither Smith nor Conger have been contacted by SNL to spoof Palin on the show.