More Than Just A Pretty Face“Fake,” “perfect”, “cheesy” …these were just a few of the words that Scottsdale Teens said when asked to describe Pageant girls. Although none of them had ever competed in a pageant or even known a pageant girl, everyone, myself included, seemed to think they knew exactly what these girls were like. But after just ten minutes of talking to Miss Arizona Junior Teen winner, Amber Scholl, I realized how stereotyped these girls have been and how very wrong the stereotype was at that. So take the fake tanned, overly made up, bathing suit model cliché and throw it away, will the real Miss Arizona Junior Teen please stand up?
Amber Scholl was thirteen when she competed in her first pageant and contrary to the belief that “it’s all about looks” Amber did it for the experience. “I wanted to participate because I love to be on stage, enjoy public speaking, trying new things, and meeting new people” says Amber. After hearing about pageants through a couple of friends from her cheer squad Amber begged her parents to allow her to compete. After doing some research on pageants they settled on National American Miss, where Amber would compete in the junior teen division for the title of Miss Arizona Junior Teen. Amber’s division consisted of girls who were thirteen by January 1 but no older than fifteen by that date.
Although before competing even Amber was a bit leery about the “pageant girl stereotype” she was glad to say out of the seventy nine girls she competed against “I truly found none of the girls or their moms to fit any of the stereotypes. We all were there to do our best and reach our own personal goals.” And those goals could be anything according to Amber, from a shy girl working on public speaking skills, to a girl who wants to show off her voice in the talent section, everyone was there for different reasons, and very few of them were there to show off how they looked.
In fact girls under the age of thirteen competing in the National American Miss Pageant aren’t even allowed to wear makeup while competing, and the girls in Amber’s division only had to wear an interview suit, production outfit, and formal gown, so forget what you hear about young girls parading down the stage in swimsuits. “The atmosphere at the pageant was very fun and very supportive of everyone. The pageant encouraged friendship and support of one another” said Amber.
Although Amber was one of the youngest girls competing in the competition, she was the one who took away the crown. Many people said the reason she won was in fact, because she acted so natural. Along with the title, Amber also won four other awards in optional contests at the pageant, including first place Casual Wear Model, Miss Personality, first runner up Best Actress, Second Runner up Spokes model. First timer Amber Scholl was definitely a force to be reckoned with.
Photo: Tracy Rasinski
Shot on location at Paddock Pools
Stylist: Stan Coles
Makeup: Margo Marks
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