Tehachapi has new "royalty" with a transition in the Miss Tehachapi pageant according to coordinator Debbie Rea. Not to be confused with Tehachapi's long-standing "Junior Miss" program, the Miss Tehachapi pageant was launched in 2010.
In 2011 the pageant was held in November with Haley Bartow crowned as Miss Tehachapi 2012, Kyla Reed named Jr. Miss Tehachapi 2012, Sydney Howard named Little Miss Tehachapi 2012 and Mackenzie Shugart named Tiny Miss Tehachapi 2012.
Rea said that the pageant has decided to move from a November date to the spring to better coincide with other pageants and provide the girls a better opportunity to compete in pageants that lead to Miss California.
However, some of those crowned a year ago have decided to step down, leaving openings on the court that were filled on Sunday, Oct. 21, with the girls next in line from last year's pageant taking their places.
Crowned on Sunday, Rea said, were Chrissie Archuletta as Miss Tehachapi 2012, Delaney Shafnitz as Jr. Miss Princess 2012 and Jamie Moser as Jr. Miss Princess 2012. Tiffany Rea, Miss Desert Vista's Outstanding Teen 2012, performed the crowning.
Archuletta is a senior at Tehachapi High School and will attend college in San Diego, pursuing medical studies. She is a volunteer at Tehachapi Hospital, and is the daughter of Steve and Stacey Archuletta.
Schafnitz is a sophomore at THS and a junior member of the American Legion Women's Auxiliary. She is the daughter of John and Lorri Schafnitz.
Moser is an eighth grade student at Jacobsen Middle School and is involved in cheer and dance. She is the daughter of Jim and Carrie Moser.
The pageant director has also announced the kick-off of the 2013 pageant. The first orientation will take place at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 4, at the Stallion Springs Community Center. Girls interested in being contestants for 2013 are invited to attend. All contestants must live in the Tehachapi area.
For 2013, the pageant is expanding to include six titles and age categories, as follows: Miss (ages 16 to 19), Teen Miss (14 to 15), Young Miss (9-10), Little Miss (6-8) and Tiny Miss (4-5).
The competition wll include an introductor speech on an assigned topic, formal dress modeling, talent and an onstage question and interview with five judges from out of the area.
At the orientation on Nov. 4 there will be a tea and modeling of pageant fashions. The girls will have an opportunity to see clothing for interviews, formal, talent and character wear.
To meet requirements of the Miss High Desert pageant, which can lead to the Miss California-Miss America scholarship program, the 2013 pageant will be held in May.
"Miss Tehachapi is a community scholarship pageant," Debbie Rea said. "Not only is it a community based pageant, it's also a feeder pageant, which feeds into Miss High Desert/Desert Vista/Northern Los Angeles County, which then feeds into Miss California Outstanding Teen and Miss California. If a teen girl wins in the Tehachapi pageant, she may go onto the High Desert Outstanding Teen or Miss pageant. If she places with High Desert, she then qualifies to go onto Miss California Outstanding Teen and Miss California pageant in June, in Fresno. If one places in the California Outstanding Teen and the Miss California, those girls will move on to Miss America Outstanding Teen and Miss America. This is where Miss America and Miss America Outstanding teen are finally chosen."
She also emphasized that the program provides girls with many opportunities for growth.
"Any girl may compete, even if she does not have a talent, feels she is too shy, or doesn't have very much money, or whatever it may be," she said. "We work with the girls for several months. We teach them everything they need to know, how to walk, speak, and interview. We also provide dresses, or costumes for those that need them. I don't want girls to not compete because of these issues. We work with any girl who is serious about the pageant."
The Tehachapi Court not only does the fun things, like parades and pageants, but are also very involved with community service, Rea said.
"Community service is our number one priority," she noted. "Our community service ranges from helping with foster programs, American Legion activities, animal programs, community activities, and a yearly program for Easter, which is Easter Baskets/gifts for sick children and needy families, started by Tiffany Rea in 2010."
The Court members are expected to do community service and are involved with a Presidental Service award program, which means if a girl completes a certain amount of service hours, according to her age, she will be rewarded with a certificate, pin, and a letter from the President of the United States at the end of her year, Rea explained.
"I want everyone to know, we are not looking for a 'Beauty Queen,' but ambassadors for Tehachapi," she said. "This means, we want girls who are kind, moral, academic, reliable, and professional. This is what we look for in a contestant."
Call Debbie Rea at 822-5842, or 557-5818 for more information regarding the orientation and competition.