The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

Inside Scoop On Pageant Life

by: Robin Guile, Quill Staff

I have been doing pageants since I was little. Preparing at the Little Miss age doesn't even compare to the preparation you undertake when preparing for the Queen Pageant. When I was little and did pageants it was general questions, for example: "What's your favorite thing to do at the fair?".

Going into my first Queen Pageant, I had no idea what to expect. I got asked questions like, "What are you going to do after college?", "How can you improve your county?", and "Do you live on a farm?". These were random questions you just couldn't prepare for, but that's what the judges want to do. They don't want you to be rehearsed, they want you to just be yourself.

We practiced our dance weeks in advance, and hoped we wouldn't mess up come the big day. My first year during the talent portion, I sang. I was so nervous I thought I might pass out, but that wasn't even the most nerve racking part. We then had to walk and model our dresses and the whole time you were thinking, "Please don't let me trip and fall in front of all these people". The part we were all nervous about was standing there and waiting for them to announce the runner-up and the Queen.

The second year I had an idea of what it was going to be like. I wasn't near as nervous and I had so much fun. I wasn't nervous during the interview, dance, or talent. Everything seemed to fall into place, except for one thing, the modeling. I had really high heels on, and for those of you who haven't walked in dangerously high heels, I don't recommend it. It was very uncomfortable, and I'm sure I looked it. Surprisingly, my second year in the pageant I got runner-up again. I knew what was expected of us at the fair, and I looked forward to washing livestock, mud volleyball, and doing all I could to help.

This year at the 2006 Henderson County Fair Pageant we had to do a speech instead of talent. My first thought was, "Oh no, I can sing in front of anyone but I can't speak in front of my class let alone hundreds of people". I was very nervous. We practiced our dance several times and I wasn't nervous at all come the pageant day. The interview went well and so did the dance. Next up was the speech, and since this was my first public speaking appearance, I was very nervous. I had it memorized, but once I got on stage, I started shaking, but I finally got through my speech and was looking forward to the rest of the evening.

Next we had evening gown, and it went well for all of us. Lastly it was time for the crownings. The Little Miss and the runner-up were so cute and it was so hard to decide. All of us Queen contestants were waiting with anticipation. Finally it was our turn. They announced the runner-up, Lindsey Dilsavor and then they said, "Your 2006 Henderson County Queen is...Robin Guile".

I couldn't believe it, it didn't seem possible. I am still shocked today, actually. I am so glad I conquered by fear in public speaking, and that I decided to go out one more year.

Being this year's Queen, I have many responsibilities and I am ready and very excited to undertake them. I hope I can live up to all of your expectations and also be an encouragement to younger girls.

To those girls who are thinking about being involved in the pageant, I highly recommend it.

Pursue your dreams and be patient. It is more than a beauty contest. It's a pageant that will help you overcome your fears and bring you to a level you never thought possible.