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Hairston captures pageant crown
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Bronwyn Hairston (left) and Virginia Crabtree pose Saturday in the Walker Auditorium at Patrick Henry Community College after being crowned Miss Martinsville-Henry County and Outstanding Teen Miss Martinsville-Henry County, respectively. Both will compete in their respective state competitions next June in Roanoke. (Photo by Ray Reynolds)

Monday, August 6, 2012

By TRISHA VAUGHAN - Bulletin Staff Writer

The newly crowned Miss Martinsville-Henry County came to the scholarship pageant Saturday night armed with a dazzling smile, stylish outfits and a generous amount of nerves.

Bronwyn Hairston, 22, won the title in the Walker Auditorium at Patrick Henry Community College after several rounds of competition that included interview, talent and swimsuit categories.

She is a Virginia Tech graduate and daughter of James and Renay Hairston of Bassett.

Also crowned was Virginia Crabtree, 16. She was named Outstanding Teen Miss Martinsville-Henry County and is the daughter of Mark and Rebecca Crabtree of Martinsville.

“(I feel) very good. I’ve worked really hard for it,” Hairston said about winning the title. “I’ve wanted it for a very long time.”

She said she was nervous but prepared a lot for the pageant. She has competed in pageants since she was four years old, she added.

“I had a lot of good competition,” Hairston said. “All the girls are really talented.”

The most difficult part, she said, was preparing for the swimsuit portion of the competition. She said that she worked to get her body in shape with diet and exercise, and worked up the confidence to show it off on stage.

“Going across the stage in stilettos and a swimsuit would make anyone nervous,” she said.

She will keep up her physical routine in preparation for the Miss Virginia pageant next June in Roanoke, she said, and plans to keep up with current events and promote her platform, Volunteer Opportunities in Communities Everywhere (VOCE).

Hairston wants to work with area high school students and be a resource for them to help find volunteer opportunities. She especially hopes to help Martinsville High School students because the school added a requirement that all students must complete at least 48 hours of community service.

For young women who want to compete in the Miss Martinsville-Henry County pageant or others, Hairston’s advice is to “just go for it.”

“If you’re thinking about it, just go for it!” she said. “Do your best and be confident.”

Haylee Hunt, 17, a senior at Franklin County High School and daughter of Keith and Debbie Hunt of Penhook, was the first runner-up; Kalayna Cassady, a freshman at Patrick Henry Community College and daughter of Gene Turner and Melissa Cassady of Woolwine, was the second runner-up; Kimberly Seamon, 18, a freshman at James Madison University and daughter of David Seamon and Wendy Seamon of Martinsville, was the third runner-up.

Mary Hannah Garber, 20, a junior at Virginia Intermont College and daughter of Dr. Jeanie Garber of Boones Mill and Sam Garber of Bedford, was crowned Miss Greater Franklin County. She also won the talent portion of the competition.

Outstanding Teen Miss Greater Franklin County was Jordan Hawkins, daughter of Tracy and Greta Reese of Danville; and Pre-teen Outstanding Miss Greater Franklin County was Alexis Bollings, 10, daughter of Charles and Carolyn Bollings of Rocky Mount.

Laura Meighan, 22, a sophomore at Virginia Western Community College and daughter of Paula and Rex Meighan of Moneta, won the swimsuit competition; and Christina Mitchell, 17, a senior at Martinsville High School and daughter of Wanda Deering of Axton, won the award for congeniality.

The nonprofit scholarship pageants are produced by local volunteers who include committee members Jane Leizer, Howard Huff and Anne Norman for Martinsville-Henry County and J.T. Foley, Tonya Haigler and Donna Magill for Greater Franklin County.

For more information on preliminaries to the Miss Virginia Pageant, visit


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