Garton ready for round three |

Garton ready for round three

VAIL – Madison Garton is pretty well grounded for a woman floating among the stars.

Madison is the entertainment blogosphere’s favorite babe a spotlight-stealing appearance on ABC’s “The Bachelor.”

The Vail native is one of 30 stunning young women vying for the affections of bachelor Brad Womack on this season’s reality series.

Madison is Tim Garton’s and Rodnie Garton’s daughter. After she attended Vail Mountain School she took the circuitous route to New York City, where she works as an actor and model.

“She’s a great girl, and she’s already successful,” Tim said.

Tim is a successful local entrepreneur, headed into his 44th year in Vail. He has been amusing and amused by just everything … especially this.

The family is solidly local.

“All our kids are VMS kids. They’ve always loved it in Vail,” Tim said.

Madison’s modeling career started just as she graduated Vail Mountain School, when Madison was invited to participate in a Sports Illustrated swimsuit calendar contest.

She and about 15 other girls were flown to Los Angeles for a battery of interviews and photo shoots, to see how she looked in a bikini. It’s a swimsuit calendar, after all.

She didn’t win, but she grabbed the attention of an international modeling agency, which offered her a contract.

“Things really opened up for her after that. She has traveled around the world, a couple times,” Tim said.

Shows like “The Bachelor” don’t usually go for actors, but they made an exception in Madison’s case. Contestants undergo a much more stringent background check than your average vice presidential candidate.

“They really vet these girls for weeks and weeks,” Tim said.

Bachelor Brad, it might be noted, is on his second go-round as “The Bachelor’s” bachelor. In 2007, the man was set upon by 30 other women – all smart, strong-minded, spirited and stunning. Most guys would fall deeply, purely and permanently in love at least 30 times. But Brad, well … Brad just wasn’t feeling the love.

According to ABC, Bachelor Brad used to work in the Texas oil patch, saved his money and bought a bar with his twin brother – a snippet to which some women will swoon, “OMG there’s TWO of them!” Now he’s Bachelor Brad.

Apparently there’s more to him than meets the eye, and there’s plenty to meet the eye.

When Bachelor Brad peels off his shirt on camera, even middle-aged flaming heterosexual guys can see that Brad is smokin’ hot, which they’ll admit if they’re secure enough in their own masculinity.

And so are the women.

As in 2007, Madison and the other women in this year’s Bachelor lineup are loaded with “It,” and when you’ve seen “It” in quantities of that magnitude you know “It” when you see “It.”

When we last looked in on our heroines, Garton had been the buzz of the blogosphere for popping in and out a set of veneer fangs, as Brad gazed upon her with something like wonder in his eyes.

Womack said the fangs were “sexy” and that Garton is “fun,” which are both true.

But they’re not real, of course; she had them made for a Halloween costume. And Madison is not a member of any vampire club, despite what might be floating around the blogosphere.

“As for the vampire club, if you listen to what she really says you will hear her say she once met the leader, not that she is a member … how things do get twisted,” Rodnie said. “Saying she is a member because she met him is like saying you are a member of Congress because once you met a senator.”

In previews off coming attractions, Madison keeps it coming. A snippet from an ABC preview clip shows her resplendent in thigh-high black boots and a dominatrix outfit. Garton throws her leg onto the table in front of Womack, dropping her boot inches from his astonished face, grabbing his head and pushing it down toward her boot and ordering him to “Lick this!”

Looking sheepishly up from the shiny black leather boot and toward the camera, Womack raises his index finger to the sky and says, “Check!”

What happens after that remains a secret more tightly-controlled than anything Wikileaks might get its hands on, or, what those 11 herbs and spices in Kentucky Fried Chicken might be.

Filming started in September and everyone was sworn to absolute secrecy. So far, everyone’s behaving themselves, as long as you count artificial fangs and dominatrix duds as behaving, which we think should count.

The attention Madison is getting from “The Bachelor” could help her career, which is going well anyway, Tim says.

“It’s been good. Her career in modeling and acting has been advancing quite well. She’s been at it six years,” Tim said.

It looks glamorous, and sometimes it is, but it’s not easy.

“There are many more disappointments than successes,” Tim said.

She has seen her share of both, appearing on the cover of Bride magazine and many other publications. You’ve seen Garton in films including “The Smurfs” and “Sex In The City,” and television shows like “30 Rock,” “Rescue Me” and “Lipstick Jungle.”

Star magazine featured her as a “Rising Star” in its Nov. 29, 2009, edition.

“The Bachelor” is a reality show competition. ABC selects a group of 30 women and one eligible bachelor each season.

At the end of each week’s, Womack gives a rose to each woman he wants to stick around. Women who don’t get a rose don’t have to go home, but they can’t stay there.

When four women remain, he heads to their hometowns for a hometown date and to meet the parents.

In the season’s final show, the bachelor can choose one woman, or none, as Womack previously did in 2007.

Reach staff writer Randy Wyrick at 970-748-2935, or

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