Archive for Thursday, August 31, 2006

Graceful competition

EHS freshman experiences state contest

August 31, 2006

Until receiving a recommendation from her middle school counselor, Eudora High School freshman Katherine Slavin never thought she'd be in the running for a tiara.

Likewise, the concept of walking up and down a stage in evening wear never really seemed likely.

Despite never really considering it, Katie earned a place as one of the top-10 contestants during the 2006 Miss Teen of America's Miss Teen Kansas competition Aug. 11 to 13 in Manhattan.

"I never thought I'd do anything like it. She handed me (the application), so I just thought I'd try something new," Katie said.

After sending in paperwork ---- including a common sense quiz ---- Katie learned she'd been chosen to compete.

"I was just excited I made it," she said.

After making it into the competition, Katie spent the next several months preparing.

Her mother, Cindy Davidson, kept everything on track.

"It's not so much a beauty pageant as it is a recognition pageant," Davidson said.

Katie had to find her wardrobe, memorize presentations and locate sponsors.

She said finding sponsors wasn't that difficult.

"I went to a few places. I got turned down at maybe one or two, but the rest were willing to sponsor me," she said.

After getting support from local sponsors, Katie also worked to perfect her wardrobe during the weeks leading up to the pageant.

"It was kind of fun just being able to have a whole day of shopping just on me pretty much," she said.

Although she practiced a song and a presentation about herself, Katie was still nervous when the time finally came to go on stage.

"I was pretty much nervous the whole weekend."

During the course of the weekend, she sang her song, went through interviews and prepared a formal wear presentation.

Despite the nervousness, Katie had moral support from her mom and a friend from high school.

She also took the support from her other classmates, she said.

"A lot of them were excited for me. They all thought it was pretty cool," she said.

In the end, Katie finished in the top 10 out of 53 contestants.

In the process, she learned something about herself, she said.

"I learned to be more outgoing and it helps me for when I have to do future job interviews and all that," she said.

She said the experience would also help her be less nervous when she needs to go on stage.

With several more years of eligibility left, Katie said she might return to take part in the pageant again.

If she did, she might tweak her presentation or prepare more for the interviews, but on the whole she would remain exactly the same.

"I was pretty much myself through the whole thing. There wasn't much I could change."

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