MOBILE, Alabama — Aftermost June, afterwards 18 months of bazaar analysis and alike added of soul-searching, America’s Junior Miss became Distinguished Adolescent Women.
The AJM name, it seemed, evoked images of a boyish adorableness pageant.
Scholarships didn’t appear to mind; aerial heels and hairspray did.
“We were activity to die if we didn’t do something,” controlling administrator Becky Jo Peterson said during an acclimatization affair aftermost anniversary for the 50 accompaniment winners.
A year afterwards the name change, Peterson continues to booty calefaction for it, abnormally in the burghal area the program’s Civic Finals accept been captivated for added than bisected a century.
Peterson knows affluence about America’s Junior Miss history and traditions. She was Napa Valley’s Junior Miss in 1975.
• Luau at LuLu’s, 6 p.m. at LuLu’s Homeport Marina in Gulf Shores, the 50 accompaniment assembly will adore the dusk and banquet on bounded seafood.
• Beauty, Brains & Barbecue, noon, the adolescent women will sample barbecue and all the fixins’ at Saucy-Q Barbecue on Government Street.
• Community Night, 6:30 p.m. the accessible can get a blink of the Distinguished Adolescent Women as they accomplish selections from the 54th Civic Finals program. To acquirement tickets, alarm 251-438-3621.
• Preliminaries and Finals, 7 p.m. at the Mobile Civic Center Theater. Preliminaries are Thursday and Friday night with Civic Finals captivated on Saturday. Tickets may be purchased by visiting www.DistinguishedYW.org or by calling 251-438-3621.
But, she said, adviser analysis appear that abounding accomplished America’s Junior Misses — the ones who took home the better banknote scholarships — were not advertisement the account on their resumes, fearing the celebration stereotype.
“I anticipate everybody was appealing surprised,” Peterson said of the acknowledgment of affairs leaders and lath members. “It was a actual actual thing.”
America’s Junior Miss started as a bounded antagonism hosted by the Mobile Junior Chamber of Commerce alleged the Azalearama Pageant. Aerial academy chief girls competed to be crowned queen of the Azalea Trail Maids.
But back entrants started assuming up from Mississippi and Florida, sponsors opened it to aerial academy girls from every accompaniment and renamed it the Junior Miss America Celebration in 1957.
It became America’s Junior Miss in 1959.
In the 1980s, yet addition name arrived: America’s Adolescent Woman on the Year. But that change, said Peterson, was fabricated too bound and after abundant apprehension to accommodating affiliates.
The name America’s Junior Miss alternate in the aboriginal 1990s.
In 2005, America’s Junior Miss absent its civic television contract, a arresting of alteration times and tastes. For years, the consummate night of antagonism had been advertisement alive on ABC, again on cable channels. Now, the final antagonism is streamed alive on the Internet at www.local15tv.com.
But, said Peterson, the name change is acceptable apprehension and creating new energy.
A appearance fund-raising accident this year that brought in $100,000 was sponsored by IP Casino, Resort & Spa in Biloxi and the Bacot McCarty Foundation. Master Boat Builders and Eastern Shore Toyota, she said, additionally accept active on as new sponsors this year.
A tennis accident is accepted to acquire added money and publicity back it affectedness on The Tennis Channel this fall. U.S. Davis Cup and Olympic aggregation associates Andy Rod, Mardy Fish, and Bob and Mike Bryan will banderole the Gulf Coast Tennis Challenge Sept. 26 at the Mobile Civic Center.
“The players were so abundant added aflame about accomplishing article for a affairs alleged Distinguished Adolescent Women,” Peterson said.
The basal band for the name change, she said, came bottomward to breeding allotment to break afloat. “It’s all about money,” she said.
The new name has begin abutment amid at atomic one acute constituency: The associates of the Distinguished Adolescent Women Class of 2011.
“When the affairs was Junior Miss a lot of times I would get asked ‘Are you Junior Miss America?’” explained Hannah Roberts, Mississippi’s Distinguished Adolescent Woman for 2011. “We got annoyed of cogent bodies what we are not.”
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