Junior Miss preps for state pageant

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 15, 2008

The Selma Times-Journal

Selma Junior Miss

Peyton Dismukes is in Montgomery

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preparing for the state finals of the America&8217;s Junior Miss scholarship program this weekend.

The 51 candidates in the program arrived last weekend Saturday and have spent nearly 10 days away from friends and family in preparation for the event, practicing mornings, afternoons, and evenings.

Dismukes said she likes her roommate and feels lucky to be staying with someone that she has a lot in common with.

She misses talking to her mother, Dismukes said.

Dismukes&8217; mother, Karen, said America&8217;s Junior Miss was something her daughter always wanted to do growing up.

She was a &8220;little sister&8221; her junior year of high school in order to become better acquainted with the program, and gain an inside track on successfully competing.

Little sisters provide encouragement to the senior candidates, and make gifts.

Dismukes said the hardest part for her and husband, Keith, is not being able to talk with their daughter over the phone. Parents cannot have contact with their daughters while they are preparing for the finals, except by mail.

&8220;I won&8217;t see her until Friday when she&8217;s on stage,&8221; Dismukes said.

Peyton Dismukes said a frequent misconception is that people think America&8217;s Junior Miss is a pageant.

Each candidate is

evaluated in five categories: scholastics, talent, fitness, self-expression, and interview skills.

Scholastics points are awarded based on candidates&8217; academic transcripts.

The girls participated in preliminaries this week as well.

The state finals will be held at Frazer United Methodist Church.

The winner will be announced Saturday night, and a family luncheon will be held Sunday afternoon.

The national finals will be held in Mobile June 26-28.