BY DENNIS BARTLOW
WEST LEBANON, Ind. —
Young women in western Indiana who have aspirations of becoming Miss America now have a local pageant to start them on their way.
The West Central Indiana Inc. Scholarship Pageant can start a girl on the road to becoming Miss Indiana and eventually Miss America.
The West Central Indiana Scholarship was dormant last year but has been reactivated with Jae Ann Brier, a former Warren County Fair queen contest director, as the pageant director. She was appointed by the state board. She has served as a judge at several county fair pageants.
Brier is working with a board of directors to sponsor the first pageant on Saturday in the Fine Arts Center at Seeger Memorial High School. The pageant formerly was staged in Crawfordsville, Ind.
Five counties make the West Central Indiana Pageant region. They are Fountain, Warren, Montgomery, Benton and Newton.
“We are a non-profit organization, and we offer scholarships,” Brier said. “We have had several workshops with the girls.”
Both pageants will begin with an opening routine featuring all of the contestants.
“We have worked with the girls on their talent.”
Seven girls, ages 17-24, are competing for the Miss West Central Indiana title with the winner going to the Miss Indiana pageant in June at Zionsville.
Contestants are Amelia Shettle, Hunter Ransom and Christen Lord, all of Warren County; Connie Louthen and Allie Louthen, both of Fountain County; Heather Phillips of Benton County; and Kayla Leach of Newton County.
Competing in the Outstanding Teen category for girls 13-17 are McKenna Click, Ciara Childress, Mayzie Spragg, Sarah Downing and Kassidy Tharp.
In the preteen princess division for ages 10-12 are Brianna Snider, Amelia Bell, Taylin Edwards and Ashley Thompson.
The Littles division for ages 7-9 features Paige Laffoon and Scarlett Summers.
The Teeny division for ages 4-6 includes Haven Gilbert and Adelynn Warrick.
Admission will be $10 for adults and $5 for students K-12. This pageant will include the Miss West Central Indiana and Outstanding Teen divisions.