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Scholarship pageant starting in South Hall

POSTED: September 18, 2008 5:01 a.m.
SARA GUEVARA/The Times

A tiara lays on a table inside the Spout Springs branch of the Hall County Library System during the informational meeting Sunday.

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FLOWERY BRANCH — Plans are developing for the Miss Hall County/Flowery Branch Scholarship Pageant set for Nov. 7-8.

An informational meeting took place Sunday at the Hall County Library System’s Spout Springs branch.

"This pageant is about inner beauty, not about who has the most expensive dress," pageant director Dawn Siska said to those gathered for the event. "... It is about facilitating opportunities for young people to make a difference."

The competition will raise scholarship money for pageant winners and benefit Fifth Row Center, a South Hall-based community theater program.

Contestants have until Oct. 27 to register for the competition. Registration for all ages costs $75.

Parents can enter daughters as young as 2 years old for the various stages of the Miss Flowery Branch competitions.

The eldest Miss Flowery Branch pageant will feature 12th-grade contestants and a scholarship award.

To be eligible for the Miss Hall County pageant, contestants must be high school graduates up to 22 years old. That pageant also features a scholarship award.

Contestants will have the opportunity to develop life skills in communication and volunteerism through public relations appearances as well as community outreach.

Free workshops are planned for the Miss Hall County, high school and middle school contestants, focusing on interview and communication skills, as well as stage presence and poise.

The middle school pageants are set for 7 p.m. Nov. 7. The youth and high school pageants are set for Nov. 8. The Miss Hall County pageant is set for 7 p.m. Nov. 8.

The pageants are scheduled to take place in the gym at Friendship Elementary School at 4450 Friendship Road in South Hall.

Fifth Row’s artistic director, Donna Chalmers, called on Siska to direct the pageant, as the two have a history working on children’s musicals through their church, Trinity Christian Fellowship in Lawrenceville, Siska said.

"When she said she was planning a community theater here in Flowery Branch, I did some research and said you know you don’t really have any programs for young women there," Siska said.

"(I said) ‘What do you think about planing (the scholarship pageants) and really facilitate opportunities for young women to volunteer and make a difference together and really build a sisterhood?’ "

Chalmers agreed and asked Siska if she would serve as the director.

Siska replied, "It’s my heart. Absolutely."

Siska has directed similar pageants in Dacula for the past three years.

"It has grown tremendously," she said of the program.

Three Dacula pageant contestants — Charity Bandy, Mindy Johnson and Amy Chroeng — are helping in the Flowery Branch pageant.

"We’re just here to help and make it the same experience it was for us in Dacula," Johnson said.



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