Tuesday night, I had the most fun serving as a judge for the Dancing with the Stars Fundraiser in Beebe! Eleven well-known local couples performed choreographed dances in front of a packed audience with standing room only. I was really impressed with the community involvement and support of Beebe Junior High! People of all ages laughed throughout the entire show, as the contestants “showed off” for the crowd!
Thursday, I was privileged to judge the Arkansas Healthcare Association Nursing Home Pageant. Those women are awesome! The contestants’ ages ranged from 66-104! The common advice from all of the women was to enjoy life and surround yourself with positive people. I value their wise advice! Congratulations to Ms. Shirley from DeWitt for winning the pageant with her humor and charm!
I joined the Arkansas Student Leadership Forum for dinner on Thursday. The weekend I attended the Forum as a college junior changed my life. Later that year, I attended the National Student Leadership Forum and the National Prayer Breakfast in Washington D.C. I was honored to return as a speaker for the Forum to encourage students to become mentor leaders. Visiting with the students after the session, I was blown away by their passions to change the world. My generation has so much to offer!!
Friday, I reunited with the Arkansas Rice Depot for another fundraiser in Conway. This time, Justin Acre and Pat Bradley were there to promote the Red Beans and Rice Fundraiser on The Buzz radio station. I always have fun while on air with the Buzz! This time around, they gave me a chemistry quiz since I was a college chemistry major. Pat labeled the session, “Nerd talk with Miss Arkansas.” Haha! They were so funny! I expect an invitation back to the studio for birthday trivia!
I stayed with Hollyn, a college friend, and her family on Friday night. Even though I arrived late Friday night, Hollyn’s family had prepared a beautiful family dinner for me! If you ever want to quickly become my best friend, then invite me over for family dinner! It was awesome!Saturday was a long, yet rewarding day! Hollyn and I left at 7 a.m. for the Susan G. Komen Race in Texarkana. Hollyn’s mother is a survivor of breast cancer and this event is significant to her family. I met many more courageous women at the survivor breakfast. Later, I participated in the opening ceremony and shot the gun to begin the race. The race was incredibly organized and successful as over 9,000 individuals walked in the Race for the Cure.
Saturday night, I met with girls from Second Baptist Church of Conway. We enjoyed dinner in a beautiful home before we sat down to discuss life. I briefly spoke about overcoming challenges with self-esteem and then answered the girls’ questions about a variety of issues. Remembering how difficult high school was, I encouraged the girls to serve as a light for Christ among their fellow students. Whether you recognize it or not, you have great influence among your friends!
I have lots of work to do for the upcoming week! I will work very hard on my new dance and in the gym. Working on scholarships for Miss America and interview preparation are also on my agenda. I look forward to speaking in schools and at the Boys and Girls Club. May Colossians 4:5-6 be my prayer for this week, “Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.”