Pageant contestants represent ‘best’ of Tennessee

Always a highlight of the of annual Tennessee Association of Fairs meeting in Nashville is the crowing of the State’s Fairest of the Fair.

This year’s pageant proved to be no different.

The queen and her court of runners-up are selected each year from a bouquet of beauties representing fairs from all across the Volunteer state.

Among the unusual notes found at this year’s event was a queen whose mother won the same crown 26 years ago and two members of her court from the same county.

Abbey Wilson, representing the Maury County Fair, was named the State’s Fairest of the Fair. Her mother, the late Kimberly Galloway, won the same honor in 1990.

Wilson, a student at Zion Christian Academy, said before she entered the event she was competing in honor of her mother who died in 2013 after suffering a fall in her home.

The state pageant’s first and third runners-up are both from Marshall County, live in Lewisburg, and both are classmates at Marshall County High School although one represented the Marshall County Fair and the other the Tennessee State Fair.

Crowned first runner-up was Courtney Neill, Miss Marshall County Fair, and chosen third runner-up was Megan Ski Hollingsworth, Miss Tennessee State Fair.

Hollingsworth, a high school cheerleader crowned Miss Tennessee State Fair back in September, is a typical teenager just as others who competed in the pageant.

She lists on her Facebook page Justin Bieber as a favored recording artist, has a host of friends she communicates with routinely, is active in a plethora of school activities and professes publicly “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

Hollingsworth is not unlike others who competed in the state pageant from small towns, rural counties, large cities and urban areas all across Tennessee.

“She, as her fellow contestants, represents the very best our state has to offer. We see this every year in our State Fair pageant,” said Kinsey Emery, the events director for the Tennessee State Fair.

“Young ladies from all over Tennessee come to Nashville to compete in our pageant every September. They are all beautiful and all very special. They are a credit to their communities and an inspiration for our future,” she said.

Other runners-up in the 2016 Tennessee Association of Fairs pageant were Callie Corum, second runner-up, Claiborne County Fair; and Katie Rampaul, fourth runner-up, Dickson County Fair.

state fair - abby wilson

Abbey Wilson, Fairest of the Fair

state fair Courtney Neill, Miss Marshall County

Courtney Neill, First Runner-Up

state fair Megan Ski Hollingsworth

Megan Ski Hollingsworth, Third Runner-Up