It's time again for beauty to bloom at the second annual Miss Camellia Pageant, sponsored by the Thomson-McDuffie Chamber of Commerce. Pageant organizer Jennifer McCall said 14 young ladies will be competing in various age categories and separate competitions for the community title.
"I love doing it for the girls," Mrs. McCall said. "They learn a lot of skills that I believe are important for them to be successful people in the future."
The age brackets have changed this year to add younger contestants. The categories include the Young Miss division for ages 9-11, the Junior Miss Camellia division for ages 12-14 and the Miss Camellia division for ages 15-18.
"It's something new for me, because I run a lot of pageants, but I've never run a pageant for young girls, so I'm looking forward to it," Mrs. McCall said.
The contestants will receive scores for their academics and community service prior to the pageant. During the pageant, experienced judges who are from out of town will grade the contestants on their communication skills during an interview and their presentation of formal wear and sportswear. The scores will be combined to determine the winners of each division. Prizes include savings bonds, gift certificates, trophies, bouquets, sashes and crowns.
Other areas of competition include an optional talent competition, the Best Smile, which is the most photogenic, the Miss Congeniality, which is voted by the contestants, and the People's Choice, which is chosen by the audience.
"We have a wide variety of girls, from very experienced to never done this before," Mrs. McCall said. "So my hope is that those that are experienced can bring along those who are unsure of what to do."
The pageant will be at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 19, in the Thomson High School auditorium. Admission is $7 for adults and $3 for children 10 years and younger.