Johntasia Harrison, the 11-year-old daughter of Johnta and Shaneika Harrison of Morven, has been crowned Little Miss HOLLA! 2018.
Harrison is a fifth-grade student in Diane Moore’s class at Morven Elementary School, where her favorite subject is reading. Her hobbies are cheering, dancing and singing.
She has aspirations of becoming a registered nurse, and her passion is helping others through giving back to her community.
Harrison was also the winner of the HOLLA!/Morven Chapter of Las Amigas MLK Essay Contest held in February.
According to Johnie Pettiford, pageant director, The Little Miss HOLLA! Pageant is a component of The HOLLA! Youth Enrichment Program.
“The mission of the program is for its participants to acquire educational and cultural experiences, develop new friendships and learn the importance of volunteerism,” she said. It is a year-round program that endeavors to motivate youth through exposure and mentorship.
Devin Pettiford envisioned this year’s theme as “Stepping Into The Future.”
A highlight of the pageant was participation in The Black History Program at North Carolina State University. The young ladies had the opportunity to represent Black historical figures at a Blacks In Wax Museum on the campus of the university.
Carolei Bryan, Youth Career Connect teacher at Anson High School, orchestrated this opportunity. She was also instrumental in teaching the participants the routine for a step show performed by the contestants. The step show was performed as a tribute to past and present celebrity “stepping stones” as well as four local “stepping stones.”
Local “stepping stones” honored during the pageant included: retired principal and present school board member Marilyn Bennett; Sarah Burns of the Caraway Foundation; Wadesboro Elementary School teacher Debra Rosebud; and Anson Middle School Principal Danielle Hutcherson-Blount.
After performing the step routine, the pageant participants proclaimed with raised fists: “We are your future!”
First runner-up for the pageant was 10 year-old Makayla Teal, a student at Peachland-Polkton Elementary School; second runner-up was Marlee Sturdivant, an 11 year-old Morven Elementary School student. Also in the pageant were, Saleeyah Crowder, Ky’Lah Simons, Azaria Pratt and TyRihanna Lindsey.