Fair Queen crowned Wednesday evening
Published 1:35 pm Thursday, August 15, 2013
COURTLAND—Alexandria Grizzard, 17, of Capron, was crowned Miss Franklin-Southampton County Fair Wednesday at 9 p.m.
When her name was called in front of the more than 1,000 people watching the main stage, she was in complete shock.
“All of the young ladies were wonderful,” Grizzard said. “It was a great experience to get to know them. I was just taken aback, of all of the great people up there, I couldn’t believe it happened.”
Carla Matthews, 20, of Newsoms, was the first runner up and when last year’s Pageant Queen Victoria Blow was bringing her sash over, she said she felt blessed.
“I was just extremely excited,” Matthews said. “I was surprised. It was the first time I’ve been in a pageant, and I was not expecting to even place.”
Pam Ellis, fair board member and pageant co-chair, said it was a tough decision for the judges.
“I have 11 really pretty girls who are very talented,” Ellis said. “They not only excel in school, but also in sports and in their churches. They were just well rounded girls.
“I hate that they all could not win. But I think that Alexandria will make a nice queen, and Carla will be right there with her.”
Ellis said this was the most girls the pageant has had participate.
“I was just very excited because we had such a good turnout,” Ellis said. “I hope we have a good turnout next year.”
Grizzard, who like Matthews had never been in a pageant before, attended Southampton Academy and will be enrolled as a freshman at Virginia Tech this fall to major in medicine, hoping to become a physician in neuroscience. She would like to study autism, which is what she based her platform on — Autism Speaks.
“I have researched autism, and I have also met a young man who has autism who inspired me to become more knowledgeable,” Grizzard said. “I feel like Autism Speaks makes a difference, and I wanted to spread the word.”
Matthews attended Southampton High School, and she is now a junior at North Carolina Wesleyan College, where she majors in education. Her platform was child abuse and neglect prevention.
“It is a very under looked aspect of society,” Matthews said. “It harms more than 6,000 kids a year. I can be a voice for the children who cannot defend themselves.”
Matthews hopes to pursue her Master’s degree and when she is done with her education, she hopes to return to Southampton County to teach children and also coach softball. Matthews is an all-district softball player for her college’s Div III program, and she was also the offensive player of the year.
Grizzard is looking forward to the upcoming year.
“I am really excited about making appearances, being in the parades and in heritage day,” Grizzard said. “I just want to be more involved in the community and help out in any way I can.”