2008-09-11 / Front Page

Miss Wilkes Pageant deadline is next week

Pageant director Ashley Barnett talks with middle schoolers (l-r) Breanna Ingram, Chelsea Burse, Kelsey Brooke, and Camille Lewis about the upcoming Miss Wilkes County Pageant. Pageant director Ashley Barnett talks with middle schoolers (l-r) Breanna Ingram, Chelsea Burse, Kelsey Brooke, and Camille Lewis about the upcoming Miss Wilkes County Pageant. The deadline to sign up for the 2nd Annual Miss Wilkes County Pageant, set for September 27, is approaching, and organizers are urging contestants to get their paperwork in.

"The deadline is just a week away," said Ashley Barnett, who is co-directing the event with Ed Franklin, "So don't wait until the last minute, get your entry in now. It was standing room only last year."

The pageant will be held Saturday, September 27, at the Pope Center, with contestants from 12 months to 6 years of age competing at 11 a.m. and the 7- to 18-year-olds beginning at 7 p.m.

Entry applications are online at www.MissWilkesCountyPageant. com or may be picked up at Bee Southern, Talk of the Town2, Tena's Jewelry and Gifts, or at the Washington Wilkes Chamber of Commerce located on The Square.

Little boys will have their own division, Barnett said. "It's going to be great to have all our handsome little guys - Little Mister Wilkes County for boys age 4-6 years and Tiny Mister Wilkes County for boys ages 2-3 years. Just dress them up in their Sunday clothes, or little tuxes, and enter. What they wear doesn't really have any bearing on winning."

Barnett is excited about the second year of the pageant. "There were 52 contestants in the pageant last year," she said. "We had a wonderful time and it was a great experience, I hope, for all of the girls."

The queens chosen at last year's inaugural event will be present to crown their successors, Barnett said, after a busy year of appearances at local events and festivals, on television and a billboard, she said.

In addition to the new boys' classes, pageant divisions will be: Baby Miss 0-11 months; Toddler Miss 12-23 months; Tiny Miss, 2-3 years; Little Miss 4-6 years; Petite Miss 7-9 years; Deb Miss10-12 years; Teen Miss13-15 years; and Miss16-18 years old.

The attire 0-12 years will be Sunday dress only, Barnett said. Pageant dress is allowed for 13-18 years.

Entry fees for the pageant include the $25 mandatory beauty pageant fee. Optional competitions include Photogenic, Prettiest Smile, and Best Dressed, which are each $5 additional. Admission will be $5 for adults, and $3 for children five and under.

There will also be a no-charge People's Choice Picture competition. "At the pageant everyone can vote for their favorite contestant for $1 per vote," Barnett said. "The contestant who receives the most cash votes wins a cash award, and this is a great way for families to show their support!"

Barnett said that the People's Choice contest has no affect on the outcome of the pageant. "The cash award will be awarded at the end of the pageant, and judges will not know the outcome beforehand." Pageant organizers will need a picture of every contestant for this event. All pictures will be featured in the lobby of the Pope Center.

There will be a mandatory rehearsal Thursday, September 25 at 6 p.m. for ages 12 months through 6 years, and at 7 p.m. for ages 7 through 18. The deadline to enter is Wednesday, September 17. Contact Ashley Barnett at 706-678-2013 or email misswilkescountypageant@ yahoo.com with any questions.

Barnett said that the pageant is seeking sponsorships and is selling ad pages for the program. "Farmers and Merchants Bank, they're always so generous, and they sponsored the Pope Center rental," Barnett said, "and Tena's Jewelry and Gifts is donating all the crowns, and we are so thankful for community support."

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