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This Saturday, Courtlyn Adams will put a smile on her face and high heels on her feet as she competes for the crown at the Miss Kentucky County Fair pageant.
But this isn’t her first time competing at the state level — Adams, 18, competed in the Miss Teen Kentucky County Fair pageant about three years ago.
Compared to local pageants, state pageants are in a “totally different world,” Adams said. But having competed in a state pageant before, she feels more prepared this time.
“I know what to expect,” she said, adding that when she met the other contestants during the Kentucky State Fair in August, she also recognized a few faces.
“Some of the same girls that were in Miss Teen are in this pageant, too,” Adams said.
The 80-plus contestants will compete in the same three categories as they did at the local level, she said. Those categories are interview, swimsuit and evening gown.
“But this time we get to wear heels with our swimsuits, and we don’t wear hula skirts,” she said, referring to the green grass skirts worn in the Miss Lawrenceburg Fair and Horse Show pageant this past summer.
Another difference between the state and local pageants is that Adams isn’t allowed to have anyone backstage with her to help her get ready.
At the local pageant, contestants could have parents and hairstylists to help them change out between categories, she said.
Adams was crowned first runner-up in the 2008 Miss Lawrenceburg Fair and Horse Show, but the pageant’s winner, Courtney Sullivan, stepped down due to personal reasons, Adams said.
Adams assumed the role of Miss Lawrenceburg Fair and Horse Show in July and couldn’t be more proud to represent her hometown this weekend.
“I’d like to win,” Adams said. “We all want to win, but if I make the top 20, I’ll be happy. Tuesday’s my birthday, so that would be a good birthday present.”
Adams is currently a student at the University of Kentucky. She’s pursuing a degree in secondary math education with hopes of one day becoming a principal. She is also a member of the Delta Delta Delta sorority.
One of her favorite hobbies is shopping, she said.
“I work at Macy’s in the shoe department — which has its benefits,” she said.
She also enjoys scrapbooking and spending time with family, including her four baby cousins, her sister, Ashlyn, and her Yorkie, Lola.
She is a daughter of Kathy Adams, who was crowned Miss Lawrenceburg Fair and Horse Show and competed in the same state pageant 30 years ago.
Pageants have changed a lot over the years, Kathy Adams said.
“I did my own hair, we didn’t have fake nails, there were no spray-on tans,” she said. “Girls have a lot more options to cosmetically enhance themselves now.”
Pageants have also gotten more expensive, she said.
“Although, I’m sure my parents thought it was expensive back then,” she said.
Another difference from then to now — “The crowns are much bigger,” she said.
The Miss Kentucky County Fair pageant is at 6 p.m. Saturday at the Galt House in Louisville.
E-mail Shannon Mason Brock at email@example.com.