Eleven contestants competed for the crown at the 2015 Miss USU Eastern scholarship pageant Wednesday night at the Geary Theatre. Each young lady had to the opportunity to perform a talent, compete in a lifestyle and fitness category, answer an on-stage question and walk across the stage during an evening gown competition.
At the end of the evening, Danielle Parke was named Miss USU Eastern. Parke will represent the school throughout the coming year and promote her platform, helping families manage the stress of caregiving for aging persons. She will also compete in the Miss Utah pageant next year.
Also receiving recognition at the pageant was Rachel Rose, who was named second attendant and Alyssa Richards, who was presented with first attendant honors. Shanae Jensen and Mireya Molinar were also part of the top five finalists.
By being named Miss USU Eastern, Parke will be awarded a $1,000 scholarship while Richards will receive $500, Rose $300 and both Jensen and Molinar will receive $100 in scholarship money.
Former Emery County Commissioner Randy Johnson was part of the panel of judges who selected this year’s royalty. “This was a really lovely, talented group of young women,” Johnson stated. “I was glad to be a part of it.”
When preparation began for the pageant, 12 young women were entered in the contest. Last Sunday, participant Taylor Johnson was in a fatal car accident near Green River. During the pageant, contestants, organizers and 2014 Miss USU Eastern Harley Earl paid tribute to Johnson by playing the song she selected to dance to during the competition. Following the musical tribute, Earl announced that a special award entitled The Taylor Johnson Spirit of Miss USU Eastern will be issued during each scholarship pageant to come.
“The tribute to Miss Taylor Johnson was quite thoughtful,” Randy Johnson stated. “She was a lovely girl and the tribute was well done.”
Also on hand at the USU Eastern pageant were members of the Miss Carbon County royalty and Miss Emery and Miss Carbon County Outstanding Teens.