Parade of beauties: Miss Mississippi delegates roll through Vicksburg

Published 7:44 am Wednesday, June 5, 2024

Monday officially kicked off the start of the Miss Mississippi Competition with a parade that rolled down Washington Street.

All 39 contestants, along with their Magnolias and Magnolia Belles, were waving while the crowd cheered and snapped pictures as they rode by.

Addisyn Grady, a former Magnolia Belle, knew firsthand what it was like to be part of the parade, and part of the Miss Mississippi Competition production.

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“It was very fun,” Grady said. “I was so excited and nervous, but once I got to know everybody, it was just so fun.”

Grady added she was a bit sad that she was not participating this year.

“But I am happy for all the girls who are,” she said.

Hanging out with Grady was her mother, Shayla White, as well as Shantee Brown.

Brown’s daughter is one of this year’s Magnolias.

“This is my daughter’s first year (as a Magnolia), and she loves taking pictures with (Miss Mississippi Vivian O’Neal) and getting (contestants’) autographs. She is excited,” Brown said.

Both women said they have attended the Miss Mississippi parade in past years.

“I look forward to coming out and seeing all the nice convertibles, the pretty girls with their crowns and outfits and just cheering them on,” White said.

Sandra Bateman made her way from Laurel to cheer on Miss University Jane Granberry, as well as her granddaughter, who is serving as one of Granberry’s Magnolia Belles.

“This is my first time attending the parade and it’s great,” Bateman said. “And we are looking forward to the competition.”

Vicksburg resident Debra Wallace and her daughter Molleigh were also parade participants. Wallace, the owner of the Debra Franco Preparatory School of Dance, said they were there to cheer on the three local contestants who were once her students — Miss Vicksburg Brelynn Beck, Miss Mississippi State University Morgan Nelson and Miss Heart of the South Sarah Randolph.

Wallace said she also has 10 students who were Magnolia Belles.

“And I also have one student who is performing (in the production) and two we have helped with their dances,” she said.

Wallace said supporting the Miss Mississippi Competition is a long-held tradition in her family.

“I don’t know how long I have been coming, but since birth,” Wallace laughed. “We lived one block from the city auditorium, and we walked to the pageant. We even have some home videos of Mary Ann Mobley when she was in the pageant.”

Mobley was crowned Miss Mississippi in 1958, the first year the pageant was held in Vicksburg. Mobley went on to become the state’s first Miss America.

Activities surrounding the Miss Mississippi Competition will continue with two autograph signings, which will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday at Kirk Chevrolet, formerly Atwood, and at 10 a.m. Thursday at various shops along Washington Street.

The Miss Mississippi Competition preliminaries will begin at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at the Vicksburg Convention Center, 1600 Dr. Briggs Hopson Blvd. The final round of competition and crowning will begin at 8 p.m. Saturday.

Tickets are $40 for Wednesday’s and Thursday’s preliminaries; $50 for Friday’s preliminaries and Saturday’s final round of competition; or $150 for all four competitions. For more information or to purchase tickets, call 601-638-6746.

The competition will also be live streamed at The cost is $20 for each night of the preliminary rounds; $35 for the final night of competition; or $85 for all four rounds of competition.

The final round of competition will also air on WLBT-Jackson, WLOX-Biloxi, WMC Bounce – Memphis, WTVA-Tupelo, WTOK- Meridian and WDAM-Hattiesburg.

About Terri Cowart Frazier

Terri Frazier was born in Cleveland. Shortly afterward, the family moved to Vicksburg. She is a part-time reporter at The Vicksburg Post and is the editor of the Vicksburg Living Magazine, which has been awarded First Place by the Mississippi Press Association. She has also been the recipient of a First Place award in the MPA’s Better Newspaper Contest’s editorial division for the “Best Feature Story.”

Terri graduated from Warren Central High School and Mississippi State University where she received a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations.

Prior to coming to work at The Post a little more than 10 years ago, she did some freelancing at the Jackson Free Press. But for most of her life, she enjoyed being a full-time stay at home mom.

Terri is a member of the Crawford Street United Methodist Church. She is a lifetime member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary and is a past member of the Sampler Antique Club and Town and Country Garden Club. She is married to Dr. Walter Frazier.

“From staying informed with local governmental issues to hearing the stories of its people, a hometown newspaper is vital to a community. I have felt privileged to be part of a dedicated team at The Post throughout my tenure and hope that with theirs and with local support, I will be able to continue to grow and hone in on my skills as I help share the stories in Vicksburg. When asked what I like most about my job, my answer is always ‘the people.’

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