Caitlin Bedwell, a stay-at-home mom from Granbury, is starting a community service-based event called Miss Somervell County Pageant.
“A lot of push that my parents gave me growing up was to be involved and help when you can help. Kids these days don’t see that and so it’s teaching them to volunteer in your community, respect your elders...it’s just giving them that little bit of push that they need,” Bedwell said.
The pageant is scheduled for 9 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 28. A location is not set yet.
Both girls and boys of all ages are eligible to enter.
“My first one for Hood County, I set [the age limit to] 0-21 and I had a lot of the older ladies ask me to push the age limit up so I'm actually doing it 0-99,” she said.
Beauty is the only mandatory category but there are other optional categories like photogenic, talent and sportswear.
The cost is $65 with an extra $15 for registration in every additional category.
The winner will be asked to do 10 hours of community service a month.
“We are not a bathing suit pageant. You don’t have to be the most beautiful girl out there to win. What we’re wanting you to do is get out there and be a part of the community,” Bedwell said. “If they win, they’re supposed to do community service hours whether it be an animal shelter, a nursing home, just getting out there and getting involved in the community.”
Bedwell was inspired to create a pageant after the experiences she had when she was a little girl.
“I did pageants as a little girl and it completely changed who I was,” she said. “I was really shy, not an outgoing kid, so I researched pageants when I was little and my mom put me in a community-service-based pageant and I started doing special education and working with Circle of Friends. I [also] did special Olympics.”
She originally started a pageant in Hood County but decided to expand it to other counties. She hopes to eventually start a pageant in Erath, Johnson and Tarrant as well.
To register, visit the Miss Somervell County Pageant page on Facebook and fill out the registration form.
“We’re not judging you on the dress you wear. We’re judging you on how you carry yourself in that dress,” Bedwell added.