By Melanie Ruberti firstname.lastname@example.org
June 2, 2014
Beauty is not just what’s on the outside, it must also come from within.
For women who compete for the ultimate title of Miss Georgia, they must have brains, poise, fitness, talent and much more. Two local contestants have already proven that once, now 22-year-old Sydney Shadrix and 15-year-old Lizzy Stanford will try to do it once again when they take the stage for the 70th annual Miss Georgia pageant later this month in Columbus.
“Whether I win or lose, at the end of the week … I know I’ll be a proud woman,” said Shadrix.
Shadrix won Miss Troup County back in January. For the Carrollton native, it was the first pageant she had ever competed in in her life.
“I was shocked,” she said. ” Waiting for that moment and you feel your heart beating … then they crowned me. And I said, ‘Now what do I do?’ I thought for sure I wouldn’t win my first pageant … but I was happy to win.”
“It was a wonderful experience,” she added. ” The other girls were so nice. I think they felt bad for me. They were showing me how to stand in heels, how to turn and pivot in heels on stage. They were very sweet and very supportive.”
Now the Belmont University graduate and classically trained singer is preparing to take the stage once again. Starting June 18, for three days she’ll compete alongside 38 other women for the title of Miss Georgia 2014 in Columbus. Also on stage will be Stanford. She won Miss Troup County Outstanding Teen in January.
“I was very excited … pleased and thankful,” said Lizzy. ” I planned on going back to Miss Georgia, but I didn’t want to represent anyone but Miss Troup County.”
The Dawsonville resident and ballet dancer is finishing up the choreography for the number she will dance in the talent portion of the pageant. This will be the teens third time competing. Last year Stanford was second runner up and won the Overall Fitness portion of the contest. This year she will compete against 40 other young women for the title of Miss Georgia Outstanding Teen in Columbus.
Over the three days, both ladies will compete in categories like evening wear, interviews, on stage questions, fitness or swim wear, and talent. The stakes are high: the Miss Georgia competition is a scholarship pageant, which means money to finance college aspirations, or help pay off student loans. Along with that comes the crown, title and job requirements, plus, for Shadrix, a chance at the national title of Miss America.
Shadrix and Stanford know the competition will be fierce in Columbus, but they also believe in themselves and their abilities to accomplish their goals.
“There’s always nerves … but I do feel confident,” Stanford said. “This is one of the most incredible organizations I’ve ever been a part of.”
“Even though I’ve never done pageantry, I’m a performer. I’ve had leadership roles and I’m confident in my abilities,” Shadrix said. “There are things that they’re asking of Miss Georgia that I’ve been doing all my life. I’m just going to be the best version of myself.”
“You can do so much more than you think you’re capable of,” she added. “Nothing is unattainable if you’re brave and courageous.”
The winners of the Miss Georgia pageant will be crowned on June 21 at the RiverCenter for Performing Arts in Columbus. Anyone seeking more information or to buy tickets may contact the RiverCenter at 706-256-3620.