Brittany Wrenn, 13, holds a flower after she was named Queen of the 12-13 age bracket during the Karnival Kuties Beauty Pageant at Independence High School Sunday. All of the proceeds from the event will benefit the Newspapers in Education program.

Carla Nelson described Sunday’s Karnival Kuties Beauty Pageant at Independence High School as a stellar success, especially in spite of the wintry weather conditions that swept through southern West Virginia.

“We had a fantastic turnout,” said Nelson, circulation, sales and marketing manager for Beckley Newspapers. She estimated Sunday’s crowd at more than 300. There were 48 competing contestants in several different age brackets.

Nelson reserved special thanks for both the volunteers and the Independence High School staff for their assistance with the pageant.

“They helped us out a lot. I also want to thank those who came out and participated. This is our second pageant. We did one last fall. We are planning to do one in April with a Hannah Montana theme. Watch for details on that,” she advised.

All of the proceeds from the event will benefit the Newspapers in Education program.

The various age groups at Sunday’s pageant each had a supreme winner and a mini-supreme winner, Nelson explained. The former had the highest overall score, while the latter had the second highest score. Each group also featured a queen and a princess.

Nelson announced the pageant’s victors as follows:

- The supreme winner for the 11 years and older age group was Lindsay McPeak, and the mini-supreme was Meri Zirckel.

The 12-13-year-olds were led by queen Brittany Wrenn. There was no princess in that group.

The royalty in the 11-year-old age group was queen Elise Atha and princess Kelsey Knoopf.

For those 14 years of age and older, Bethany Hightower was the queen and Tiffany Weikley claimed the title of princess.

- Haley Bowman and Kelci Lockhart were supreme winner and mini-supreme winner respectively of the ages of 3 through 10 years.

The queen of the 3- and 4-year-olds was Brooke Lipford, and their princess was Zoe Crook.

For those of ages 5, 6 and 7 years, Audrey Smith was queen and Angel Sadler was princess.

Shayliegh Lilly and Alexis Burnette will reign as queen and princess of those in the 8-year-old to 10-year-old age bracket.

- Hannah Lester and Jadelyn Staunton were named supreme and mini-supreme winners of the 2-year-old age group. The queen was Isabella Tolliver, and the princess was LaShaya Brown.

- Although not formally considered a pageant, those younger than 2 years old also competed. The queen was Kaylee Massey, while the princess was Hailee Lilly.

Trevor Dickerson was named as king of that group, while Seth Toler was crowned as the prince.

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