Preparations are underway for the 40th annual Miss Western Arkansas Pageant.

Eligible Miss and Teen contestants must reside in Crawford, Sebastian, Franklin, Logan, Scott or Washington counties, or must be enrolled and have completed at least 12 credit hours at a college institution in the eligible counties. Princess contestants are accepted statewide.

Miss contestants will compete in five phases of competition: Interview, swimsuit, evening gown, talent and on-stage question. Teen contestants will also compete in interview, sportswear, evening gown, talent and on-stage question. Princess contestants will compete in casual wear and formal wear.

The Miss Western Outstanding Teen and the Miss Western Arkansas Pageant are both official preliminary pageants to the Miss Arkansas Outstanding Teen and Miss Arkansas Pageants held this summer in Hot Springs. The winner of each pageant will represent Arkansas at the Miss America Outstanding Teen Pageant and the Miss America Pageant.

Justin Butcher, executive director of the pageant, stressed the importance of scholarship awarded through the various local, state and national pageants.

"Contestants have the ability to completely pay for their bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, the opportunity to study abroad, even some opting to attend law or medical school all without spending a dime of their own money, he said."

Last year alone the winner of the pageant was awarded over $15,000 in scholarship and prizes, with over $20,000 being awarded overall thru the various awards handed out at the pageant, Butcher said.

The Miss Western Arkansas Pageant has been named by the Miss Arkansas Organization as the state’s "Best Small Region Pageant" for the past two consecutive years. The award is given based on the on amount of scholarships awarded as well as the prize packages awarded to the winners.

"We have tremendous sponsors who realize the importance of the pageant. It builds self esteem, confidence, poise, and provides life skills that these young women can carry with them the rest of their lives," Butcher said.

The 2014 pageant will be held Feb. 8 beginning at 7 p.m. at the Van Buren Fine Arts Center on the high school campus.

"We have an exciting evening of entertainment and competition planned and a beautiful venue to showcase it in. We are fortunate to have such facilities in the River Valley," Butcher said.

For a full listing of requirements and entry forms visit, visit us on face book, or reach Butcher by email at

Girls ages birth to 12 are eligible to compete in the annual Miss Western Arkansas Princess Pageant.

Emilee Higdon, princess director said, "We are excited to be giving the princess pageant a makeover this year. There will be five age divisions, with prizes awarded in each division. This is a great opportunity for young girls to become involved with the Miss America organization early in life."

Entry fee for the princess pageant is $50. Contestants also may enter to be crowned "Grand Supreme" as well. Contact Emilee by e-mail at

The princess pageant will be held Feb. 8 beginning at 2 p.m. at the Van Buren Fine Arts Center.

The entry deadline for the Miss Western Arkansas Scholarship Pageant, Miss Western Arkansas Outstanding Teen Pageant and the Miss Western Arkansas Princess Pageant is Feb. 1.