This past Saturday, Feb. 15, Sumter County held the annual Princess of Hope Pageant in Bibb Graves Auditorium.

Mothers and daughters filled the auditorium and changing rooms with bedazzled gowns and make up as hairspray filled the air. The young girls graced the stage with beauty as they walked for a cure.

Mommies for a Cure’s Princess of Hope Pageant began with fewer than 25 contestants six years ago and  has grown to over 60 participants within the past two years. In the six years of this charitable fund raiser, Princess of Hope has raised over $8,000  for their Relay for Life team.

“Contestants are able to walk in honor or in memory of either a family member or friend who has survived, who still struggles with or who has passed away from cancer,” said  director Brandi Partridge.

UWA’s 2013 homecoming queen Libby Hankins emceed the morning and afternoon portions of the event. UWA grad student Eadie Caver entertained the audience as she performed “Bless the Broken Road,” country hit “Temporary Home,” and the recent Disney hit “Let it Go” from the Disney’s movie “Frozen.”

The Princess of Hope pageant is a preliminary pageant that leads to the Little Miss Alabama Pageant. Sixty Four contestants participated in this year’s pageant, which was divided into five separate categories.

UWA partnered with Princess of Hope and offered a 1,000 dollar scholarship to the new Miss Princess of Hope to attend college at UWA.

“We hope for the pageant to grow and for all girls, in state and out of state to participate,” said Partridge. “This pageant is open for ladies from ages three to 18. The contestants don’t have to participate in memory of a cancer patient/survivor but we do like for them to.”

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