Winners named in two divisions Saturday night


IMLAY CITY — There were plenty of smiles and waves to the crowd during the Imlay City Little Miss Pageant held Saturday night in the Imlay City High School Auditorium.

Ten entrants in two divisions spent several days preparing for the competition that was being hailed as “Girl Power.”

More than 60 proud parents, grandparents and other guests filled the room as the young entrants performed numerous variety acts including dancing and public speaking.

Event organizers says it was the first time the pageant was held in the past three years, due to the COVID pandemic. In a former life, the pageant was associated with the Miss Blueberry Festival.

Little Miss winner Presley Stroup and Junior Miss winner Nevaeh Ritten (right) were all smiles after winning their crowns Saturday night.

Those entered in the Little Miss competition included Presley Stroup, Rosalie Fekel, Thea Campbell, Elowen Geschke, Harley Barzyk, Piper Stroup and Evelyn Fekel.

Just three entrants were in the Junior Miss division: Nevaeh Ritten, Anastasia Madeline and Mya Medrano.

Judges for the event were Michelle Barton, Tiffany Guerrero, Trinity Stoldt, Kaitlin Schultz and Cheyenne Roy.

After several minutes of debating the top performances and scoring each contestant, the judges named Presley Stroup as the winner in the Little Miss category and Nevaeh Ritten was the winner in the Junior Miss division.

Piper Stroup was first runner-up and Thea Campbell was second runner-up in the Little Miss division. Anastasia Madeline was first runner-up in the Junior Miss division while Mya Medrano was second runner-up.

Darrien Aguinaga, a former winner in Imlay City pageants, crowned the two winners and handed out awards to the first and second runner-ups in each category.

Those helping organize the event were Nicole Sherman, Imlay City Chamber of Commerce President Melissa Hampton and Lorraine Filer. Kim Jorgenson served as the event’s EMCEE.

Liz Hampton worked to prepare the girls for competition, coaching them with their dance performances and a ponpon routine.

Sponsors of the event were Imlay City Ford, Backyard Creations, Kempf’s Florist, Cheri Patch, John and Betty Cramer, Greg Dennis, Bomb Burgers & Breakfast, Silver Grill and Dee’s Country Cafe.

Organizers of the event were pleased with the support given to the pageant and are already looking forward to next year’s event.

In the meantime, Little Miss Presley Stroup and Junior Miss Nevaeh Ritten will be riding on a float at various festivals and parades this summer.

Congratulations to all the participants and those involved in planning the event.