Excitement was brewing among contestants and their families as they awaited the Tucker County Fair Pageant to commence, at 6 p.m., last Wednesday, at the fairground at Camp Kidd. This year’s pageant included a children’s division in addition to the Junior Fair Queen and Queen Daphne competitions.
Two year old Sidney Knotts was the youngest contestant taking home the title of Baby Miss Tucker County. Her mother, Heather Knotts stated, “The pageant makes me a nervous wreck. I hope it is helping her by encouraging her to do something like this early so she will not be scared when she is older.” Sidney’s older sister, Autumn, age 11, competed in the older pageant for the title of Junior Fair Queen.
Four year old Ashbey Darlington, the second youngest contestant was awarded the title of Wee Miss Tucker County. Ashbey said her favorite part of competing is “dancing, walking, smiling and waving.” Her older sister, Shaleigh, age nine, competed this year for the title of Little Miss Tucker County. Shaleigh said, “I’m very excited because it’s my first time in the pageant and I like to try new things. My favorite part is just having fun!”
Mini Miss Tucker County was awarded to six year old Jonna Mullennex. Her mother, Debbie Thompson explained, “I entered Jonna in the pageant because I want to create more awareness of the abilities of children with special needs. Jonna was born with Down Syndrome and severe bilateral club feet. The issue with her feet has resolved, and she is a very bright child. I want people to understand despite limitations, handicapped children can participate and enjoy normal activities.”
In addition to Darlington, nine year old Braelynn Yarbrough, eight year old Elissa Phillips, nine year old Shayla Mason, eight year old Isabelle Hauser and eight year old Laney Burns competed for the title of Little Miss Tucker County. Braelynn explained, “This is my first time in the pageant. I just moved here from Texas, and I’m a little nervous. I’ve only stood in front of people when I was singing in the church, and this is a little different. My favorite part is just having fun!” Elissa stated it was also her first pageant and she was a little nervous too. “My favorite part is waving. I like waving because I get to wave at my family.” Shayla, also a first timer said she was excited to compete. “I’m excited because I get to see all the ladies strut their stuff!” Isabelle, also new to the fair pageant said, “I’m excited because I’ve never done a pageant before. Having fun is the best part.” Laney, who had a little pageant experience under her belt as flower girl when she was five, stated, “I’m a little nervous. I’m not very used to pageants and stuff. My favorite part is doing your best.” At the end of the night, Shayla Mason took home the title of Little Miss Tucker County, and Shaleigh Darlington carried home the title of Miss Photogenic.