SAN MARCOS — Before the Miss San Marcos and Miss Teen San Marcos pageant started Feb. 21, the tension in the air was palpable. Contestants giggled with nervous excitement as they whispered furtively. Parents stood anxiously, taking everything in as they waited for the lights to dim and the curtain to part, while young men with flower bouquets shifted uncomfortably in polo shirts, hoping that their friend/sister/girlfriend would win.
Of course everyone hopes the contestant they’re in attendance for will be the one to receive the crown and all it entails. The winner will represent San Marcos at many events, such as county fairs, national holiday events, business mixers and outdoor movies. This is also the first year a Miss Teen San Marcos was awarded.
Kent Smith, father of Miss Teen San Marcos contestant Kandyce Smith, has another hope for his daughter. “My understanding is that as kids are preparing for college applications, any of these extracurricular activities are beneficial. I like how it broadens her chances for that kind of thing.”
The inside of the San Marcos Civic Center was decorated with cargo nets, palm tree cutouts, jungle animals and a colorful backdrop on the stage for the contestants to parade in front of. The girls completed this theme when they debuted onstage, wearing pith helmets and cargo shorts to introduce themselves to the audience.
The pageant also included introductions, dance numbers (see www.coastnewsgroup.com), a question and answer segment and then the contestants’ final moments in a gown onstage. During Miss San Marcos contestant Maeve Camplisson’s introduction she said she was part of the National Honors Society as Mission Hills High School. Sandra Sanchez revealed herself as a part of AVID. All of the contestants had something to be proud of, with accomplishments ranging from having a high GPA to helping out their community. Preparing for the pageant was not just about practicing smiles and picking a perfect dress, contestants had to perform community service as well. A month or more of service was required in order to compete.
The pageant flowed smoothly thanks to the director and support staff. The pageant director, Molly Lindhart, former Miss San Marcos 2005, has been working with the contestants closely to ensure this. “I teach the girls everything that they do onstage. I teach them how to do their interviews, how to give speeches, what dresses to wear … pretty much everything.”
When the final drum roll began, Mayor Jim Desmond, the host of the night’s events, revealed that Jordan Sena and Natasha Satterfield were the Miss Teen San Marcos and the Miss San Marcos winners, respectively. The crowd erupted in applause, though the other contestants seemed just as enthused for the winners as if they themselves had been crowned.
The first Miss Teen San Marcos shared this euphoria. “I honestly didn’t think I was going to win,” Sena said. “I was so nervous. I just wanted my friends to win. I just stood there and we all held hands. We were shaking. Once the judges looked over at me and smiled and said, ‘Your new reigning Teen San Marcos,’ I was thinking, ‘Is it me?’ and then they said my name and I was, ‘What?’ I was very excited. I love all these girls, I’m glad I got to spend time with them.”