Hogue glad to represent Wayland as titleholder

If Emily Hogue had been asked a month ago about giving up her crown as Miss Wayland 2001, she might have been more reluctant. But now, with the pageant looming and three weeks of hard, non-stop work under her belt, she might just appreciate the chance to hand over that responsibility to another.

Hogue, a junior chemistry and biology major at Wayland Baptist University, relinquishes her title Saturday at the Miss Wayland 2002 Pageant, which begins at 7 p.m. in Harral Auditorium on the Plainview campus.

Though Hogue said she'd be glad to see any of the 18 contestants win the next title, she admits the past year has been rewarding and challenging.

"I've gotten to play the piano and speak at a lot of places, and I've really enjoyed that," she said. "This year has given me a neat platform to stand on and tell people about the Lord, people I wouldn't have met otherwise."

Hogue said she's made numerous appearances at area civic group meetings and at university banquets and other functions. From riding on a convertible in 40-degree weather for a parade to playing one song at a nice banquet, Hogue has seen it all. But it all comes with the title.

While the performing and meeting people have been enjoyable, Hogue admits there are other parts of the title that are more challenging.

"It has definitely made me set my standards higher, because I stand for a school that stands for God," she said.

"Putting the pageant together has been a whole lot more work than I thought. There's a whole lot more behind the scenes than I realized."

For the past few months, Hogue has spent most of her free time doing the one task most Miss Wayland's don't mind relinquishing: organizing the next pageant. With help and creative assistance from student activities coordinator Leslie Boyd and student services secretary Amber McCloud, Hogue has had to come up with a theme, decorations, flowers and helpers to choreograph the opening numbers. She's enlisted a sound crew, stage crew, escorts, judges and any other necessary roles.

She credits McCloud and Boyd - who she said have a tendency to think more in terms of how to prevent slipups during the pageant - with keeping the event organized and with soliciting gifts from local merchants for the winner.

For the past three weeks, she's called Harral Auditorium her evening home as she and the 18 contestants have practiced everything from the opening dance number to how to walk in their evening gowns. With energy now waning, Saturday's pageant will at least bring about Hogue's chance to get some much needed rest.

The pageant will feature evening gown competition and entertainment by Hogue, who will be joined by her twin sister Allison, a junior at Howard Payne University, for one number. Following the announcement of the top ten finalists, those ten will present their talent competitions. The field will then be narrowed to five for the final question.

According to McCloud, the talent and interview portions of the competition - both of which are done on Friday - will account for 35 percent each of a girl's score. Evening gown scores will account for the remaining 30 percent. The final question score will then weigh in as one-third while the average will weigh two-thirds, combining to determine the winners and runners-up.