Scenic City 2014 Preview

Saturday, July 27, 2013 - by Wendy King
Shelby Thompson
Shelby Thompson
- photo by Kristy Belcher

When Shelby Claire Thompson was named Miss Tennessee 2013 last month in Jackson, she became the second Miss Music City representative to win the title.  However, the Franklin resident and University of Tennessee graduate also has a Chattanooga royalty connection.

In 1977, Eunice Elizabeth Belew won the Miss Chattanooga Pageant and finished in the top 10 at the state competition.  She eventually married Milton Thompson and the couple has two daughters the eldest of whom will be departing for Atlantic City in September to compete at the Miss America Pageant as it makes its return to its birthplace.

However, the next stop on the Thompson family itinerary is a return trip to Chattanooga for Sunday’s Scenic City Pageants at Chattanooga State which will include a special appearance by Shelby who is on a limited schedule as she prepares for the Miss America competition.   The event, which will be held at the C.C. Bond Humanities Auditorium, gets underway at 4 p.m.  Admission is $15 and Miss Tennessee 2012 and former Miss Chattanooga and Miss Scenic City Chandler Lawson will emcee.   

The four-title program which consists of Misses Chattanooga, Metropolitan, Scenic City and Tennessee Valley is not only the largest state preliminary but is also among the most prestigious local programs in the nation.  Started in 2002 the program led by Executive Director Rodney Hullender and his assistants Keith Brown and Bobbie Nation, has produced four Miss Tennessee winners (Jamie Watkins Davenport (2003), Blaire Pancake (2006), Ellen Carrington Shelton (2008) and Ms. Lawson (2012)), a pair of top 10 Miss America finalists (Ms. Shelton and Ms. Lawson) along with countless state runners-up, semi-finalists and preliminary winners.

The four titles are open statewide meaning that contestants who meet the requirements are eligible to participate.  As a result, many veteran contestants along with several newcomers compete in the pageant. The winners will each receive a $500 scholarship but will also undergo in-depth preparation for the 2014 state finals next June.  They will make appearances throughout the Chattanooga area during their year of service as did the 2013 titleholders Dacey Winkleman (Chattanooga), Jaclyn Torrento (Metropolitan), Amy Catherine Flynn (Scenic City) and Hannah Robison (Tennessee Valley).  All four 2013 winners are eligible to compete in this year’s pageant but the contestant lineup will be kept secret until Sunday.  

Top left, Miss Chattanooga Dacey Winkleman, top right, Miss Scenic City Amy Catherine Flynn, bottom left, Miss Tennessee Valley Hannah Robison, and bottom right, Miss Metropolitan Jaclyn Torrento
Top left, Miss Chattanooga Dacey Winkleman, top right, Miss Scenic City Amy Catherine Flynn, bottom left, Miss Tennessee Valley Hannah Robison, and bottom right, Miss Metropolitan Jaclyn Torrento
- Photo2 by Kristy Belcher, Matt Boyd

Performing Arts Series At Lee To Welcome 4 Guest Artists

The Lee University School of Music will present the annual Performing Arts Series concerts on Sunday, Oct. 12, Tuesday, Nov. 18, Thursday, Feb. 19, 2015, and Thursday, March 5, 2015. This series brings notable guest performers to Lee’s campus. The first concert of the season features Michael Burritt, professor of percussion and department head at the Eastman School of Music in ... (click for more)

Cleveland State President Conducts Seminar At Lee University's Celebration 2014

Dr. Bill Seymour, President of Cleveland State Community College, and Gary Farlow, President and CEO of Cleveland/Bradley Chamber of Commerce, conducted a seminar Friday on The Importance of the Public School Teacher on the Local Community at Lee University’s Celebration 2014, a day commemorating the opening of Lee’s new Communication Arts building. Morning classes were cancelled ... (click for more)

Man Charged With Killing 3-Year-Old Takes Own Life In County Jail

Justin Dale Bradley died in the Hamilton County jail Saturday morning. Notification was received from the Hamilton County 911 Center at   12:50 a.m. ,   regarding an inmate found unresponsive.   Jail personnel found the male inmate unresponsive in his cell and initiated CPR while notifying Hamilton County Emergency Medical Services. ... (click for more)

Democratic Chairman Roy Herron Announces He Will Not Run For 2nd Term

Democratic Party Chairman Roy Herron announced Saturday at a meeting of the Tennessee Democratic Party State Executive Committee that he would not be seeking a second term as party chairman. “I have been blessed to serve as chairman these past two years, and I owe an enormous debt of gratitude to all of the executive committee members, party officials, staff members, and friends ... (click for more)

You’re Right With Lamar

One of Tennessee’s favorite sons, Davy Crockett, coined an oft-used phrase:  “Be always sure you’re right, then go ahead.” Being sure is quite important, but may be difficult in this election cycle. The Democratic nominee campaigning against Lamar Alexander is a man whose radio ads call for “change,” “fair” taxes and more jobs.  Sounds good, huh?   ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: A Late Garden Walk

Due to a series of pressing events I didn’t get a chance to make my September walk through the garden until yesterday. It is normally my custom to take a stroll on the first day of each new month, looking for the orchids and onions that might appear, so I can award them to those among us who deserve one or the other. So before the temperatures drop, allow me to catch up: AN ORCHID ... (click for more)