Nevada’s Miss Plus America Pageant inspires women
“This year’s pageant took place at the Texas Station Hotel, and it was a two-day event,” said pageant executive director Consuela Nicole. “Over 150 people attended, and the girls put on a great show. Our 2011 winners … are Lisa Reed (Mrs.), Ronisha Guyton (Ms.) and Chandra Patterson (Miss).”
After their participation in the pageant is complete, Nicole said contestants are encouraged to work at their full level of excellence. “From the time the ladies sign up for the pageant, their self-esteem is heightened,” she said. “Some of the contestants have soft whisper-like voices when they first enter the pageant — but by the time the pageant ends, everyone hears them speak. They seem to walk with a different stride in their step, while holding their shoulders back and head high. It is wonderful to see the pride.”
The pageant stresses healthy living and active community service. The two organizations that the pageant partners with for outreach to young women are Ladies Advocating Christian Entertainment and the Corners of Success. Nicole, who served as the 2008-’09 queen, said she was motivated to take part after overhearing a disturbing conversation among a group of young girls.
“I remember listening to some young girls talk about not having anyone in their community they could really look up to,” she recalled. “They indicated that their role models were only people they see on television and are untouchable. They really couldn’t ever see themselves accomplish certain goals (like) the celebrities they had come to admire, because they thought they were too big. I told them, ‘Once you feel comfortable in the skin you are in, you can accomplish whatever you want in life.’ The sky is the limit.”