The Crowning Legacy—67 Years of Tradition Continues

January 25, 2019

During the third week of June, for the past 67 years, women from across the State of Tennessee have converged upon Jackson for a week of individual growth and empowerment by participating in our annual competition for scholarship awards and the chance to serve as the Governor’s Spokesperson for Character Education for the year. Contestants, parents, volunteers, and friends have joined sponsors, professional entertainers, orchestras, dancers and live internet streaming and television crews to create a winning combination of promise, achievement and aspiration.


The Miss Tennessee Volunteer Scholarship Pageant, formerly the Miss Tennessee Scholarship Pageant, continues the legacy of pageantry in Tennessee.  The tradition will continue into its 68th year in Jackson, Tennessee at the Carl Perkins Civic Center from June 19-22, 2019, in order to carry on the longstanding legacy of assisting young women in our state acquire higher education through scholarships. The custom also continues for the people and local businesses in Jackson and throughout West Tennessee, who have generously supported the program in our community for decades.


This June, you will see many familiar faces both onstage and behind the scenes. Allison Alderson DeMarcus and husband Jay DeMarcus, of country supergroup Rascal Flatts, will continue to co-emcee the nightly competition.  In addition, though not always onstage, there will be more than 100 pageant volunteers present not only from Jackson, but across the entire state from as far away as Greenville, Tennessee. Our dedicated volunteers commit thousands of hours annually to the program and these young women.


Three outstanding examples of our longtime volunteer staff include:


#1 Robert Boren of Jackson has worked with the pageant for the past 44 years. He began working with the pageant when he was 10 years old setting up chairs at Rothrock Stadium.  When the bus rolled by his house on Hamilton Street, Robert would run to the stadium to help the contestants unload their luggage, assist with carrying luggage to the dressing rooms, and then would setup chairs for the audience members.  When he was a Jaycee in 1974, he took up tickets at the front door at the Jackson Coliseum (now Oman Arena).  Robert has happily and proficiently done any job needed over the years. He has assisted with everything from dry cleaning the cast’s costumes to Admissions Chairperson to Production/Talent props backstage, and from setting up televisions throughout the building for the live telecast to preparing for the Contestant Meet and Greet at the Old Hickory Mall.


#2 Darren Lykes became an integral part of the volunteer base in 2007, as the Official Pageant photographer. Darren is the owner of Darren Lykes Photography based in Jackson. He has been working with contestants for over a decade as a premier photographer and mentor in their quest for the state crown, while continuing to work with the state titleholders during their reign and beyond their years of service.


#3 Volunteer Sharon Regen of Union City has worked as a Pageant Hostess in Jackson for the past 22 years.  Sharon is a retired school teacher from the Obion County school system where she taught for 37 years. She has served as the Obion County Fairest of the Fair Chairman and Secretary for the past 25 years.  She packs her car every June, takes off time from her family and travels annually to Jackson to assist the young women competing in the pageant.  She and the other six women of the Hostess Committee are with the contestants the entire time they are in Jackson. The Hostesses work closely with Sherriff Mehr and the extraordinary team of local law enforcement to ensure the contestants’ safety 24 hours a day. They also travel with the contestants to every rehearsal and event, assist with wardrobe issues, take them to the doctor if they become sick, and even provide a “listening ear” as they support the young women as their “moms” for the week.


These extraordinary people are just three of the many incredible volunteers from Jackson and across our state who work tirelessly to house, feed, and host the women as well as, guide, underwrite and mentor.  All of these volunteers are gracious enough to take time off work and spend time away from their families in order to donate their energy and talents every year. They believe in the young women of our state, and they enjoy the hospitality of the people of Jackson.


Over the past 10 years alone, over $1,000,000 in scholarships have been awarded to contestants who have competed in Jackson.  In 2019, The Miss Tennessee Volunteer Scholarship Pageant will continue that tradition by offering scholarships exceeding $125,000.


Join the Miss Tennessee Volunteer Scholarship Pageant, June 19 to 22, 2019 as it remains at the Carl Perkins Civic Center, Jackson, Tennessee.  For more information visit our Facebook page Miss Tennessee Volunteer Scholarship Pageant.