Last year she watched the Westermeier Martin Dental & WGRZ-TV’s Mother’s Day Makeover Contest from home. This year- she WAS the Mother’s Day Makeover !

Meet Mare Zak of Akron, NY, mother of 5, grandmother of 2, home health aide, and lucky winner of this year’s contest: ” It all started like this- my stepson Rob lives in Maryland, but was up here last year for Mother’s Day” explains Mare. She continues, “My family watched the whole makeover reveal and were was so blown away by the whole thing. I needed and wanted the Smile Makeover so desperately but could not afford that kind of work. So when Rob called me this year and told me he needed a close-up picture of me and my teeth , I was absolutely horrified! I don’t let anyone see my teeth, and have become really, really good at hiding them when I talk. That’s when Rob told me he intended to enter me into this year’s Contest- I was so touched he remembered! He’s such a good boy. . So I sent him the picture on condition that he wouldn’t show it to anyone else. Even though I agreed to send it to the contest, I really felt it wouldn’t matter because I wouldn’t win anyways. I’m not lucky that way and never win anything!”

Meanwhile, back at Westermeier Martin Dental, Maria Miecyjak, Practice Administrator, poured over the one hundred plus deserving entries, looking for that one special mom to be chosen for the grand prize. Some entries were easily disqualified for not following directions or not including a picture. Others tugged at the heartstrings with their stories. “I honestly thought it would be fun, choosing one person to grant this special prize to. But it ended up being so hard, there were so many well deserving moms. One particular nomination stands out: two little boys were willing to sacrifice their whole life savings of $66.13 if it would help their Mom get a new smile! Knowing how life changing this kind of makeover can be, I felt a lot of responsibility and pressure to make the right decision ”, explains Maria. “I gathered up the top 10 contestant entries and met with both Drs. Scott Westermeier and Jeff Martin. We agonized over these entries for several days. Finally after much deliberation and discussion, we made our decision.” It was the simple, yet powerful nomination by Mare’s stepson, in combination with her picture that proved the winner:

“EVERYONE’S needs first! Lost sleep, worn out parts, pain, Mom presses on! In the quiet moments when she rests, you see the toll that these unselfish acts have taken on her. The return of her comforting and engaging smile would be a priceless, answered prayer of love to her” .

On a bright and sunny morning, Maria and the photographer set out to Akron to notify their lucky winner. When they arrived at Mare’s house, they snuck up to the front door with flowers and balloons to surprise her, hoping fervently she’d be at home! Maria knocked on the door, and after what seemed an eternity, our contest winner finally opened the door. “Mare Zak? Congratulations! You’re our Grand prize Mother’s Day Smile Makeover winner!” Maria announced. At first disbelief, then shock and finally tears of joy. “ I won? I won? I can’t believe it, I’ve never won anything in my life!!” Mare continued through her tears, “ I’m finally going to be able to look at my grandkids and kids and actually really smile at them again”!

Mare and her equally surprised husband , RJ, then invited Maria and the photographer in to their home to describe all the fabulous prizes she had won: a complete hair & makeup makeover from Cielo Salon, a luxurious spa treatment from Eros Day Spa, plus a romantic weekend for two with dinner and champagne at the charming, historic Roycroft Inn, all of East Aurora .

Upon arrival at Westermeier Martin Dental Care a few days later, the staff greeted Mare with excitement and open arms, and she met with the team of dental professionals that would transform her smile. Dr. Jeff Martin, lead dentist for Mare’s smile makeover transformation explained, “The first visit was to take some radiographs and evaluate her mouth. The information we gathered at this appointment along with conversations with Mare about what was important to her about her smile, allowed us to develop a plan she was comfortable with.” Several days later, Mare arrived at the dental office feeling very excited and eager to begin treatment. “I was a little anxious at first”, said Mare, “I hadn’t been to a dentist in many years, but I just couldn’t wait for my new smile. First I had my teeth cleaned and whitened, then some bonding and crowns were placed and finally, of course, my top teeth restored. The whole team at Westermeier Martin made me feel so comfortable. In less time than I ever imagined, I had my long overdue brand new smile! I just stood there…for at least ten minutes, looking at myself in the mirror… I couldn’t believe that was me- with that beautiful new smile. “

A week later, Mare arrived at the Westermeier Martin office for the taping of her final reveal for WGRZ’s WNY Living show with her husband RJ and daughter Michelle in tow. Before that, her first stop was at the Cielo Salon for her new hairstyle and makeup. A former hairdresser herself, Mare confessed to being a bit concerned about what would be done. But, once she arrived at the dental office, the staff just couldn’t get over her transformation-she looked at least 20 years younger! Not only her new smile, hair do and makeup, but as her husband RJ said” I’ve finally gotten back the girl I fell in love with 22 years ago! Sassy, opinionated and just plain lovely. This smile makeover will finally allow Mare’s inside beauty to show on her outside as well”.

Explains Dr. Scott Westermeier, “We believe it is so important to give back to the community that’s supported us all these generations. We do it in so many different ways throughout the whole year, sponsoring community events, free patient education seminars, local youth sports teams and of course, our annual free dental day, Dentistry From the Heart. Still, the Makeover is one event we really look forward to each year. So much so, that we’re even talking about doing our first time ever Manly Makeover Contest this year for men! The real payback to us is when we first show our patients their beautiful new Westermeier Martin smiles, the hugs and kisses and more often than not, the tears of joy that follow, are a favorite part of our day!”

As for Mare, she couldn’t agree more. As if on cue, she offers , “I promise you, you’re going to love your Westermeier Martin smile, I know I do”!

To see more about Mare Zak’s makeover journey go to and click on “Mother’s Day Makeover Winner” on the home page.

To learn more about Westermeier Martin Dental Care and all they have to offer, visit their website at or attend one of their patient education seminars, free to the community. Next seminar is scheduled for June 21st from 6-7pm. Learn about all the different options available today for replacing missing teeth, meet the doctors and the team, speak with actual implant patients. Call their office at 652-7645 to register.

Know anyone who really needs dental work but truly cannot afford it? Dentistry From the Heart is an annual charitable event providing free exams, cleanings, fillings and extractions for whose budgets do not allow for it. This year’s event will be held on Friday, June 24 from 8am-4pm at the offices of Westermeier Martin Dental Care, 950 Main Street in East Aurora. First come, first served. For more information, please call 716-652-7645.