Junior Miss Preps

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LeAnn Palmer, Lauderdale County's Junior Miss, has been hard at work for the last month and a half, preparing for this week's competition. However, she did get a nudge from her mother to get her going in the right direction.

"If my mom hadn't made me do it; I went to Anderson's and I have been working out for about six weeks, getting ready, doing yoga, cardiovascular workout, and pump and sculpt. That kind of thing to get me prepared to get my stamina up," said Palmer. "Because trust me, it's a workout out there!"

Monday the contestants were learning the fitness and stage performances for Thursday through Saturday. And some had more trouble than others learning the moves.

"That's the hardest thing for me because I'm a softball player and not a dancer," said Jeannie Mollett, Clarke County's Junior Miss. "And all this is so hard and it's so fast and it's hard to catch."

Mississippi's Junior Miss Program has been held here at the Temple Theater since 1963, providing some of the local contestants with what some might say is the home court advantage.

"Yeah I do. I think I do just because I'm used to being on the stage here," said Meridian's Junior Miss, Rachael Deen. "I know where we are and where we're going. So if everybody asks me, I know what they're talking about. So it's really been a neat thing."

Thirty-seven girls are competing for the 2002 Mississippi Junior Miss crown. The winner will be announced Saturday night.