Liberty Day Luncheon honors Miss Shelby County, Miss Alabama

On June 26, Donald Insurance Company changed from a plain place of business to a patriotic banquet hall full of beautiful ladies during the Liberty Day luncheon honoring Miss Shelby County and Miss Alabama from both the present and years gone by.

“The community (of Columbiana) has been so incredible and welcoming,” said Ashley Davis, Miss Alabama 2010.

Phoebe Donald Robinson and a few fellow Vignettes decorated several tables with red, white and blue regalia, flag-printed plates, napkins and tablecloths to give the guests a taste of Liberty Day.

Nancy Drakos, owner of the Fish Market in Hoover, prepared a healthy lunch that all the guests enjoyed.

Seven past crown-winners attended the luncheon, including Miss Shelby County 2010, Mrs. Senior Alabama 2008 and Miss Alabama 2010.

“This has really made me feel like a part of the community,” said Ashlee Stiglich, Miss Shelby County 2010. Stiglich has won more than $20,000 in scholarships and also choreographed the award-winning routine for the Miss Birmingham pageant.

Stiglich also explained that Miss Shelby County won the Miss Alabama pageant’s award for “Best Close Pageant,” meaning contestants must both reside and attend school in Shelby County.

Guests at the luncheon enjoyed mingling with each other and chatting about the differences in pageants from one year to the next.

“We do everything just like the Miss Alabama pageant, except we don’t wear bathing suits, although some of them could,” said Edwina Chappell, Mrs. Senior Alabama 2008, whose daughter Theresa, who has since passed away, was Miss Shelby County in 1990.

Robinson called the luncheon a “wonderful success.”

“I was so pleased with how it turned out,” she said. “I think the Miss Shelby Countys and Miss Alabama all seemed to enjoy themselves.”

With the 25th anniversary of the Miss Shelby County pageant coming up next year, the luncheon will continue to be a tradition in Columbiana.

“I definitely hope to get invited back next year,” Davis said.