OCEANSIDE — This year’s Miss Oceanside and Miss Teen Oceanside will be crowned April 1.
Prior to the final pageant competition, the 32 hopeful contestants will spend the week practicing performance routines, stage walks and public speaking skills.
Then on April 1 contestants will take to the stage of the James Truax Performing
Arts Center and be judged on their evening gown walk and their answer to a random question.
Carmina Barker, pageant assistant, said judges will be looking for on-stage poise and confidence.
Also receiving awards will be the first, second and third runners up, and Miss Congeniality, who is voted on by fellow contestants.
Another fun award is the audience choice award. A photo of each contestant is on display prior to the start of the pageant show, and attendees vote for their favorite.
The goals of the scholarship pageant are to raise funds for Oceanside Sea Lions Club charities and to teach young women public manners and speaking skills.
Barker said all the girls are stand outs, with ambitious career goals that range from working as a surgeon, to running a nonprofit and opening a restaurant.
“They all have a unique background and personalities, they’re go-getters,” Barker said.
Contestants go through a seven-week training session to help them present their best self to the judges. Barker said practices condition girls to think on their feet, and be comfortable on stage.
“They practice to gain confidence and show personality,” Barker said.
Barker described pageant training as a cross between charm school and a Toastmasters club.
Girls prepare an introduction that shares their education, activities and long-term goals.
There is also practice walking on stage in heels.
During practices girls are assured they are all winners for entering, and encouraged to take the confidence, poise and sisterhood they develop with them to their future endeavors.
“I love when they first come in innocent and curious, and have questions,” Barker said. “By the night of the pageant they’re blossomed and poised.”
The Miss Oceanside Scholarship Pageant has been held for more than 40 years.
This year’s pageant theme is a salute to military. It will be reflected in contestant dance performances and stage entertainment.
Expected in the audience are city officials and San Diego County crowned beauty and pageant queens.
The night also includes Miss Oceanside and Miss Teen Oceanside 2016 taking their final walks. As they do so, a slide show will display their community service and ambassadorship during the past year.
The evening ends with crowning the new Miss Oceanside and Miss Teen Oceanside, followed by hugs, flowers and tears of joy.
The Miss Oceanside Scholarship Pageant takes place a 6 p.m. April 1 at the James Truax Performing Arts Center, El Camino High School, 400 Rancho Del Oro Drive, Oceanside. Tickets are available at the door.