Sunday, May 4, 2008

Pretty with Purpose (13 of 16)

In the Miss Wild Turkey Festival pageant, 8 finalists attended all four days of the festival, required to wear crown and sash at all times. I met each and asked why she wanted to be Miss Wild Turkey Festival. Considering that a tiny town like McArthur needs its festival to attract as many visitors as possible, I found most of the conversations with the girls worrisome—the Paris Hilton look-alike just rolled her eyes; another girl, nursing a huge hickey on her neck, hurriedly dug her sash out of her pocket, where it lay beneath her cigarettes, seemingly afraid I’d tell someone she’d taken it off; a third girl told me she didn’t know why she’d entered. No surprise that a number of people I talked to were a little concerned about the potential attitude of the three-girl court (Queen and two attendants) who would be the face of the town for the coming year all over Ohio. By the end of the weekend, after just a few interactions with the girls, I found myself unable to resist rooting for the three girls who seemed most enthusiastic about McArthur. The out-of-towners who served as judges, each from locales with their own festivals, apparently had the same reaction and those indeed are the three girls who won: Megan, Breana, and Emily.

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