Special needs girls display their beauty at first Miss SPIRIT Pageant

One of the SPIRIT Pageant contestants is excited after receiving one of her gifts. (Contributed)

One of the SPIRIT Pageant contestants is excited after receiving one of her gifts. (Contributed)

FROM STAFF REPORTS

SHELBY–The first Miss SPIRIT Pageant was held on Saturday, Jan. 24 at Shelby Elementary School and designed for special needs girls to showcase their beauty inside and out.

The SERVE Team of Shelby Church of God hosted the pageant with the approval and encouragement of Principal Aderholt and the Shelby County Board of Education.

There were six contestants from around the community who participated, and each participant won her own title.

During the developmental stages of this pageant, it was decided that there would be no runners-up, no alternate placements and no participation awards given because in the eyes of Jesus, everyone is a winner and deserves to be first place.

“The pageant was designed to make these girls feel special, as special as they are to everyone they meet,” Lindsey Cothran, wife of SERVE Team Leader Wayne Cothran said. “I am so very thankful to have gotten to be a small part of their day, and I know that my life is forever changed for meeting these girls.”

Each contestant was escorted on stage to display their gown, and to show off their personalities. They all were given the opportunity to walk the “red carpet” to receive a gift at the end.

Friends and families of the contestants and many church members were all there to support the young ladies for this affair. All the girls were overjoyed with their opportunity to be a part of a pageant just for them.

The pageant was a free event for everyone, no contestant or family member was asked to pay to participate, or to gain admission to the event. With the great success of the 2015 Miss SPIRIT Pageant, and all of the encouragement and support of the community, Shelby Church of God SERVE Team has already begun planning the 2016 Miss SPIRIT Pageant.