Oct. 22 pageant will award 14 opportunities for bigger crowns
Published 6:47 pm Tuesday, October 10, 2017
The Miss America Organization is the largest provider of scholarship assistance to young women in the United States and for those interested in pursuing the national title, it first begins with winning a preliminary pageant.
On Oct. 22, 14 competitions will be held in Vicksburg with seven titles being awarded to preliminary winners who will move forward to the Miss Mississippi’s Outstanding Teen Pageant and seven preliminary winners who will advance to the Miss Mississippi Pageant.
Pageant director Tammy Wells said titles that will be awarded include Miss Vicksburg; Miss Warren County; Miss Red Carpet City; Miss Belle Of the Bayou; Miss North Central Mississippi; Miss Pride of the South; Miss Delta Blues and the seven sister titles for teens — Miss Vicksburg’s Outstanding Teen; Miss Warren County’s Outstanding Teen; Miss Red Carpet City’s Outstanding Teen; Miss Belle Of the Bayou’s Outstanding Teen; Miss North Central Mississippi’s Outstanding Teen; Miss Pride of the South’s Outstanding Teen and Miss Delta Blues’ Outstanding Teen.
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“We will get there at about eight in the morning,” Wells said, and the first pageant will begin at about 4 p.m.
The preliminary pageants will be divided into two competitions, Wells said, with the first pageant consisting of the Miss Vicksburg preliminary pageant, its sister teen pageant and three other preliminary Miss pageants and their corresponding teen pageants.
Then at 7 p.m., the remaining pageants will be held.
There will be two sets of judges for each of the groupings, Wells said, so for contestants, who did not win in the first round of competition, they technically will have a second chance to compete in the second round of preliminary competitions.
“Hopefully we will have some local girls compete,” Wells said.
Last year, local resident Anne Elizabeth Buys was crowned Miss Vicksburg and went on to win the state title.
“My year with Mrs. Tammy and Mr. Benny as my directors has been a dream come true. They truly have gone to the end of the world for me, and I am so grateful for their love and friendship. They care so deeply about their girls and truly treat them like their own. Mrs. Tammy created my dream shoes for the Show Us Your Shoes Parade (during the Miss America Pageant) and I could not even believe how perfect it was! They also both came to Atlantic City to support me. They have the girls’ best interest at heart and I’m grateful I had the opportunity to work with such loving, talented, and selfless people,” Buys said.
The reigning Miss Mississippi also competed in the Miss Mississippi’s Outstanding Teen Pageant and was crowned the 2013 Miss Mississippi’s Outstanding Teen.
“I began competing in preliminary pageants at the age of fourteen,” Buys said, “and before my first one, I truly didn’t know what to expect.”
But, now, Buys said she credits the competitions as a direct factor of her becoming a more well-rounded and confident young woman.
“Every aspect of the competition prepares you for life, whether it is living a healthy lifestyle, developing your talents, or completing a panel interview with the judges. They (those competing) can also expect to become more confident as they walk across the stage and express themselves in the personal interview,” she said.
Buys said through her years of competition she competed in seven preliminaries.
“My first preliminary was in Philadelphia. I competed for the experience and was so overwhelmed and excited to have been given the title of Miss Southland. This opportunity is what allowed me to be on the stage for the first time as a contestant in the Miss Mississippi’s Outstanding Teen Pageant. I even wore my crown the entire drive home,” Buys said.
For those interested in vying for a teen title, contestants must be 13 to 17 years of age and components of the competition include private interview, lifestyle and fitness, talent and evening wear/on-stage questions.
For those competing for a local title to advance to the Miss Mississippi Pageant, competitors must be 17 to 24 years of age and competition categories include personal interview, talent, swimsuit, evening wear and on-stage question.
“This year we will be offering the biggest prize package we have ever had,” Wells said.
In addition to scholarship offerings, Wells said currently there are already more than 20 sponsors offering prize packages.
For more information on competing in one of the 14 pageants or a fact sheet, call 662-542-2862 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
There is no deadline for entry, Wells said.
“These experiences give women memories that last a lifetime,” Buys said of competing in pageants.
“Embrace every opportunity to make a memory and make the best of whatever life brings through the process of being involved. I’ve grown so much as an individual, set goals, made lasting friendships, and have been able to make a difference in others lives. I encourage young women to do the same.”