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Davis places in national pageant

Crenshaw County’s Kelsey Davis traveled to Orlando on Dec. 9 to compete in the semi-finals of the Cities of America pageant.

After two years and 60 preliminary pageants, 370 girls assembled in Orlando to compete for the national titles.

Some 108 of these girls were in Davis’s division, many of which she became good friends with.

The girls came from all 50 states and were of all nationalities.

Only one other girl besides Davis resides in Alabama.

Over the week, the girls attended daily rehearsals and various competitions.

All contestants had a personal interview, casual wear competition and formal wear competition, including on-stage questions.

The girls were judged by professionals, including a former Miss New York, a dance instructor who has worked with two of Michael Jackson’s sisters and Britney Spears, and a Casa Blanca modeling agent who has worked with the staff of The Sopranos, Sex and the City and recording artist Fergie.

After all the work had been done, the girls were given one free day to explore Orlando and a dance party.

On the last day of competition, the final production was held, where the girls had to perform an opening number routine and the top ten was announced.

Davis then moved on to the final stage of competition, answering one last on-stage question and completing her formalwear routine.

The top 10 was made up of girls from big cities in Texas, Arksansas, Utah and others, and no one had ever heard of small-town Luverne, which gave Davis even more pride to think she had made it this far.

From there, the winners were announced and Davis was awarded Teen First Runner-Up Cities of America 2009.

She received a five-foot tall trophy, a banner and scholarship money.

Davis said traveling to Orlando was the best experience of her life.

She was accompanied by her mother, Carolyn Thrower, grandmother Mamie Bayman and aunt Ruth Bayman, all of who were her biggest fans.

While there, she made friendships that will last a lifetime and earned scholarship money to further her education after high school.

She would like to thank all her sponsors, friends, family, school members and community for all of their continual support that made it possible.