Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Draper named Miss Sorority Row

On Friday night at the Bama Theatre, the crowd was buzzing. Girls sat with their sororities, many carrying signs of support for their representative in the third annual Miss Sorority Row pageant.

First place went to Sandy Draper of Alpha Chi Omega sorority, first runner-up went to Delta Delta Delta’s Courtney Parker, and second runner-up went to Zeta Tau Alpha’s Hart Hoeffner.

Sixteen girls took the stage and represented their sororities in hopes of being named Miss Sorority Row and winning money for their selected philanthropy. The girls competed in events including game-day wear, talent and eveningwear.

The theme of the night was “On a Mission to Become Miss Sorority Row” and began with the girls making their entrance to the theme of James Bond. Each girl introduced herself by stating her name and opening her black jacket to reveal her sorority’s letters.

The pageant raised money for the American Red Cross, as well as the winning contestant’s philanthropy.

Delta Sigma Phi fraternity members sat backstage helping out and moving the show along.

“We’ve been working on this for seven months,” said Kenny Fowler, a junior majoring in accounting. “I didn’t know how much work it would be.”

Fowler said he was thankful Meschelle Stringer volunteered to be pageant coordinator. She has been doing pageants since she was 17 and was recently crowned Miss Tuscaloosa.

Fowler recognized Stringer in the grocery store and mentioned the pageant to her. Stringer was on board and began helping the fraternity put the pageant together.

“She’s been helping us with everything, from finding judges to the layout of the pageant,” Fowler said.

Tammy Jones, a former pageant queen, served as the emcee. Jones was a judge at last year’s pageant.

“These boys put on a great pageant,” Jones told the audience, “I’m so glad I get to be a part of this.”

Rushing off stage, the girls begin to prepare for the game day wear portion. Dressed in houndstooth and red, the girls lined up in their spots. Some were even in their cheer and Crimsonette outfits, showing their game day attire.

The competitors compliment each other, saying “you look so cute” and “I love your dress” to each other before they take the stage.

After shaking their pom poms and walking across the stage, the girls run back to the changing rooms in preparation for the talent portion.

In between sets, Collin Maxwell entertained the audience by playing acoustic versions of songs like “Slide” by the Goo Goo Dolls and “Ride Wit Me” by Nelly. The crowd sang along while the girls prepared backstage.

“I love watching people dance,” said Christina Garrison, who represented Alpha Phi, of watching the other girls perform their talents.

Many of the girls sang or danced, but there was also baton twirling and piano playing in the talent portion as well.

As the show progressed to the evening wear portion, many of the girls expressed their nerves for this part of the show. While the girls prepared to take the stage, Stringer fluffed their dresses and helped fix their hair.

“We couldn’t do this show without [Stringer],” Fowler said.

The evening wear is the most important part of the competition, Fowler said.

“This determines which philanthropy gets the money from the competition,” he said. “Whoever makes you cry usually does pretty well.”

With the evening wear, the girls go on stage and explain how their sorority’s philanthropy has influenced the Tuscaloosa community, and some girls included a personal connection to the philanthropy.

After finishing all portions of competition, the girls waited backstage before finding out who won. Taking their places on the stage, they arranged themselves in a semicircle as the winners were announced.

The Alabama fight song played in the theater as the girls congratulated the winning contestants, and audience members went on stage, taking pictures and hugging their friends.

“In the end, it’s all for fun,” Fowler said. “The show’s gotta go on — and it did.”

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