by Justin Vick
A few familiar faces are competing in the Miss Lake Norman Pageant, in what could be a first step toward becoming Miss America.
Miss Lake Norman, open to women ages 18 to 24 in Iredell as well as Alexander, Catawba, Lincoln, Mecklenburg and Rowan counties, serves as a qualifier for the Miss North Carolina and Miss America pageants.
The contestants are judged on talent, private interview, evening wear, swimsuit and on-stage question.
“I would tell someone who has never been to a pageant that it’s like a variety show with a twist,” said Jessi Boyer, one of the organizers for the second-year pageant. “It is very entertaining.”
Spectators will get a taste of dancing, singing and classical piano. Music selections will range from composer Franz Liszt’s “Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2” to pop singer Natasha Bedingfield’s “Wild Horses.” Outside of competition, the pageant gives contestants the opportunity to raise awareness for various causes, as well as mentor each other, since it also features an Outstanding Teen competition for girls 13 to 17.
Winners of both age groups will go to Raleigh to compete in Miss North Carolina, which is part of the Miss America Scholarship Program.
Miss Lake Norman also will receive a $500 educational scholarship, as well as a prize package that includes six months gym membership, a cocktail dress and spa services. Prize packages go to top finishers in both age groups.
The pageant takes place at 7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 19, at Mooresville High School, 659 E. Center Ave. Tickets are $12 at the door. Details: www.misslakenorman.org.
Competitors are as follows:
Miss Lake Norman
• Holland Felts, a senior at Elon University, will give a classical piano performance of “Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2” by Franz Liszt. Felts is the daughter of Joe and Lisa Petrozza and Rick Felts. She hopes to become a physician’s assistant. Her platform involves Think Pink, which promotes breast cancer awareness and education.
• Sara Miles, a senior at North Mecklenburg High School, will perform a cheer dance to Rose Royce’s “Car Wash.” Sara is the daughter of Jim and Susanne Miles. She hopes to become a pediatric oncologist. Her platform involves conquering childhood cancer.
• Elizabeth Smith, a sophomore at the University of South Carolina, will perform a ballet to music from Don Quixote. Smith is the daughter of Jayne and Tom Tasselli and Ron and Bella Smith. She hopes to have a physical therapy career. Her platform involves the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network.
• Katie Knowles, a freshman at Appalachian State University, will dance to “More Beautiful You” by Jonny Diaz. Knowles is the daughter of Terry Barkley. She hopes to become a creative director at a magazine or teach dance. Her platform involves the Confidence Coalition, which strives to improve confidence in women.
• Kaitlyn Howie, a senior at North Mecklenburg High School, will perform a jazz dance routine set to “Life of the Party.” Kaitlyn is the daughter of David and Cristal Howie. She hopes to become a dental hygienist. Her platform involves dancing for underprivileged children.
Miss Lake Norman Outstanding Teen
• Elizah Warren, a junior at Mooresville High School, will sing Francesca Battestelli’s “Beautiful, Beautiful.” Elizah is the daughter of Karen and Bradley Warren. She hopes to pursue a career in the medical field. Her platform involves Alex’s Lemonade, a nonprofit that benefits pediatric cancer research.
• Jaeden Heesch, a seventh-grader at Community School of Davidson, will perform a hip-hop and contemporary dance routine to Edward Maya’s “Stereo Love.” Jaeden is the daughter of Neil and Kim Heesch. She hopes to attend the University of San Francisco and become a neonatal nurse.
Her platform involves orphan awareness.
• Krissy Ezzell, a freshman at Wheatmore High School in Trinity, will perform a jazz dance routine for Lindsay Ray’s “You Make Me Happy.” Krissy is the daughter of Kenneth and Jennifer Ezzell. She hopes to study forensics at Western Carolina University. Her platform involves Hear my VOICE: Volunteer, Offer, Inform, Communicate, Encourage.
• Caroline Sumner, a junior at Davidson Day School, will dance to Natasha Bedingfield’s “Wild Horses.” Caroline is the daughter of Jeff and Kim Sumner. She hopes to become an orthopedic surgeon and work in sports medicine. Her platform involves Relay for Life.
• Elizabeth Draughn, a sophomore at Surry Central High School, will sing “In My Arms” by Tiffany Arbuckle. Elizabeth is the daughter of William and Belinda Draughn of Elkin. She hopes to become a nurse practitioner specializing in neonatal intensive care. Her platform involves supporting neonatal intensive care units.
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