2022 Miss Mississippi Magnolia Belles and Beaus include 19 children with Vicksburg ties
Published 5:28 pm Tuesday, June 21, 2022
Miss Mississippi candidates are not the only ones who get to wear a crown and sash.
This week as the competition gets underway, nearly 100 little girls will be sporting the same.
They are the Miss Mississippi Magnolia Belles, who are part of the Miss Mississippi Magnolia Belle and Beau program.
This year, 19 of the belles are from Vicksburg and four have grandparents who live in the River City, and on Monday they gathered for an interview before the Miss Mississippi parade got rolling and shared what it is like to participate in the program.
“It is fun,” the local belles all shouted out.
The Belles and Beaus not only get to ride in the parade, but they also perform on stage during the competitions as part of the production, which is the highlight for some.
During the production number, which features the belles and beaus, the children are divided into three groups when they perform, using three different songs.
They also perform in the grand finale.
When asked if they like the finale the best, they all said “no.”
One of the reasons, one belle said, was because “you have more room to dance” during the group performance.
Another belle said she liked the group number better, because “You get to dance longer.”
Sam Lovorn is serving as choreographer for the belles and beaus and the girls described him as “very funny and very nice.”
That is, if everyone is behaving.
One of the belles said when they were chatting, Mr. Sam, as he is referred to by the children, said he could turn into a wolf. That invoked laughter from the group on Monday.
In addition to turning into a wolf if the belles and beaus weren’t paying attention, the girls also said he used animal references in the dance moves.
“The way he makes his moves are fun,” a belle said, with the group chiming in on his terminology.
“One is called the purple rhinoceros,” “one is an orange orangutan,” and the last is a “green butterfly.”
One belle said, “(Lovorn) makes it fun.”
The group said they have also liked collecting “Foster Care Bags,” which have consisted of toys and games for children less fortunate.
In the group of belles from Vicksburg and who have grandparents who live in the community, there are a few of the girls who are related; some are sisters, and some are cousins.
But now serving as belles, they are all friends.
“It’s fun to make friends with people you don’t know,” Miss Mississippi Magnolia Belle Mary Liddy Wyatt said.
The Miss Mississippi Belle and Beau program is geared toward young girls and boys ages 7 to 10. The purpose of the program is to mentor children who have an interest in someday competing in or working on the Miss Mississippi Competition and promoting community service.
The current Miss Mississippi Competition title holders serve as mentors to their belles and beaus and also offer them the opportunity to be part of their year.
Stella Ivey contributed to this report.