Bethany Wood crowned Miss PHS

Pelham High School senior Bethany Wood reacts as she is crowned Miss PHS 2012 during a Jan. 28 pageant at the school. (Reporter Photo/Neal Wagner)

By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor

Pelham High School senior Bethany Wood was crowned Miss PHS during the school’s annual Miss PHS Pageant Jan. 28.

The pageant, which was held in the school’s auditorium, featured 62 contestants representing every grade level at PHS.

During the pageant, which was emceed by PHS teachers Karen Varner and Keith Beard, all 62 contestants performed beauty walks before the competition was narrowed to the top 25 girls.

Before the pageant began, the contestants took part in individual interviews with the pageant judges, the results of which contributed to the contestants’ scores.

After the top 25 girls completed another round of beauty walks, judges named the top 10 contestants, who were Wood, Bailey Ray, Alexandria Cochran, Geordan Saindon, Savanna Windham, Maddie Gathings, Sage Rose, Karlie Lawson, Kaitlin Peterson and Morgan Scott.

The top 10 contestants then answered on-stage questions ranging from “If you were principal of PHS for a day, what would you change and why?” to “What do you think is the biggest issue facing teens today?”

Wood’s question was “If your life was a reality TV show, what would it be named and why?” Wood, a member of the PHS colorguard, said the show would be named “Laughing all the way,” and said she tries to make happiness and laughter part of her everyday routine.

“To quote Charlie Chapman, ‘A day without laughter is a day wasted,’” Wood said in her answer.

After a final round of judging, Wood was named Miss PHS, Gathings was named first alternate, Lawson was named second alternate, Windham was named third alternate and Cochran was named fourth alternate.

Presley Sherer was named Freshman Elite, Erin McDonald was named Sophomore Elite and Morgan Scott was named Junior Elite. The three elite awards recognized contestants who achieved the highest score in their respective grade level outside the top 10.

McDonald was named Most Photogenic and Ray was named Miss Congeniality. Cameron Foss was named the pageant’s Best Escort.

Pageant director was Jenni Russell, and Emily Smith, Koren Lee and Meghan Patterson were assistant directors. Gentry Bass and Mitchell Morin handled lighting and sound, and the PHS Jazz Band provided music throughout the contest. Miss PHS 2011 Brooke Goldman passed her title on to Wood during the crowning ceremony.