Junior Miss Takes New Name

There's a new name for the event this year. It's the Distinguished Young Woman Program of Mississippi Scholarship Program.

The contestants began arriving Sunday, and began rehearsals Monday.

Even though the name has changed, all aspects of the competition remain the same.

"It's just a title change. All the core aspects of America's Junior Miss is going to be carried over into Distinguished Young Woman," said program chairman, Sid Wilkinson.

The young ladies competing say it's hard work, but also a lot of fun.

"I had to go to the YMCA every day," said Ahnna Beruk, Washington County's representative. "And every day I took two classes like aerobics and kick boxing. I'm very excited about this week."

"This is just our second day and I'm having a blast," said Hannah Robert of Covington County.

The current title holder, Katie Thurber, has a few words of wisdom for contestants.

"Focus on the competition. It's a blast. Just enjoy the experience; this would probably never happen again," said Thurber. "To get this many intelligent, talented, amazing girls together in one place. So I would just tell them to have fun with it, and really enjoy it and soak it up. "

The preliminary competitions will be Thursday and Friday nights, starting at 7 p.m. at the Temple Theatre. The finals are Saturday, starting at 8 p.m. However, there is a full schedule of activities for the whole week.

Thirty-eight young women are vying for the 2011 title.

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  • by buddy on Jul 21, 2010 at 01:22 PM
    I do not agree with the name change. Distinguished Young Women doesn't even sound good. It is name Jr. Miss because contestants are Juniors in High School. I don't agree with this and I hope it goes back to Junior Miss.
  • by Amazed Location: Meridian on Jul 20, 2010 at 11:27 AM
    I just hope the contestants and their parents respect the beautiful old theater hosting them. I've seen venues after pageants...gum stuck everywhere, items missing...it's really sad.
  • by Janice Location: De Kalb on Jul 20, 2010 at 08:05 AM
    Personally, I still liked "Junior Miss"..they changed the name some years back and reverted back to Jr. Miss. Why keep changing it? It works as it is....
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