Western Tidewater Wish Upon a Star Pageant inspires and encourages youth

Published 3:09 pm Wednesday, October 5, 2022

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The inaugural Western Tidewater Wish Upon a Star Pageant was held Saturday, Sept. 17, at Southampton High School and was sponsored by Smart Beginnings, Cofield’s Locksmith, Franklin Star Lodge #288, Southampton County Sheriff’s Department and Speaklife. 

When asked about the pageant Kashif Carter of Speaklife said, “Two of the main purposes of this pageant were to promote diversity and making it affordable for every young lady to participate.” 

Pageant divisions and criteria

The pageant consisted of four divisions, which were the Little, Junior Miss, Pre teen and Miss division. All combined there were 16 contestants. Of those, one from each division were crowned as Queen (overall winner.) The young ladies were judged in two categories, personality and eveningwear. Neatness, poise, personality and outfit were a few areas that were looked at by the judges. Pageant judges were Lorraine Greene Whitehead, Beneta Cofield and Katie Holland.

This year’s winners

Crowned as this year’s Queens were Khloe Jenkins, Morgan West, Alayna Carter and Gabrielle Johnson. Additional contestants were Elena Flores, Lauryn Bailey, Nicole Joyner, Veronica Griffith, Zuri Bradberry, Ivy Peters, Savannah Pittman, Trinity Griffith, Bradlea Wrenn, Jamiah Butler, Kameile Carrington and Blair Dickens. Wanting to recognize all of the young ladies, each contestant received a tiara. 

Additional community supporters

Pageant hosts were Ellis Cofield lll and Sarah Graham. Professional head shots were taken by Nikki Story of Storytime Photography. Photos during the pageant were taken by Jesse Evans of J-LUV Photography. The pageant was opened with the national anthem, sung by Jenny Davis. Pageant organizers would like to give a special thank you to Southampton County Sheriff Josh Wyche, who stepped in as an auditor; Southampton High School for allowing the use of the auditorium and Ash Bryant who volunteered her time to DJ the event.