Indian Hills resident Shania Sweikar, 11, has been accepted as a state finalist in the Miss Nevada Pre-Teen Pageant July 7 and 8 at the JW Marriott in Las Vegas.
The pageant is for girls ages 10 to12. There is no swimsuit competition, and no makeup is allowed for girls under 12.
"This is the first pageant I've ever done. I thought it would be fun and exciting," Shania said. "I'm looking forward to the giant pool at the hotel we're staying at."
The girls are scored on their poise, confidence and personality based on formal wear, personal introduction and interview.
"For the personal introduction you have to wear a dress that suits your personality," Shania said. "I think I'm going to wear a pink dress because pink is a bright color, and my mom says I'm bright."
The pageant winner receives $1,000 in cash and a chance to compete in the national competition in November. There are also three separate contests Shania is competing in with prizes of $250 each.
"We have never been a pageant family since it seems to be based on vanity and outside beauty, however, I am confident that with this pageant there is an outside beauty aspect, but it really tries to focus on the inner beauty," Shania's mother Amy said. "I am hoping my daughter and other girls will walk away from this experience more confident, poised role models."
When Shania enters the stage to introduce herself, she will be escorted by her dad, Rob.
"At first I was a little leery, but I was happy when I found out there wasn't a swimsuit category," Rob said. "I'm happy for the opportunity for her to get into it. She's the type of girl who's always liked to dress up, so this is perfect for her."
For more information on the pageant, visit www.namiss.com.