Blue skies, good food, array of wares for Mayfest ’24

A boy and girl in each of four age categories were named winners of the Beautiful Baby Contest, which drew more than 30 entries. The winners and the parent accompanying each are, from left, front row, Mazleigh Price (mother, Britain), Jaheem Durant Jr. (mother, Kirsi Crawley), Ezra Kirkland (mother, Rebekah Patti), Ronni Kayte Nicole Rolin (mother, Amber), and Charlie Geck (mother, Brooke); back row, Charleigh-Grace Green (mother, Kennedy), Jaxson Alexander (father, Samuel), Anna Joe Marie Amerson (mother Dallas).
Young ladies from five age groups took to the stage of Escambia County High School’s auditorium Friday night, May 3, to compete for the title of the various Miss Mayfest Pageant groupings — Miss Mayfest, Young Miss Mayfest, Junior Miss Mayfest, Petite Miss Mayfest and Little Miss Mayfest. Those who attended Mayfest Saturday to be introduced were, from left, front row, Emmerlyn Breeze Hodges, Oaklee Jo Flowers; back row, Ambry Proctor, Avaiha Colbert, Paisley Donaldson, Addison Green, Mary Elise Kent, Ashkia Weaver.

News Staff Writer

Near-perfect weather, along with a wide offering of arts and crafts, unique merchandise, and the chance to eat foods that are usually available only at fairs or festivals, combined to make Mayfest 2024 a successful event.
An estimated 4,000 locals and visitors were treated to clear, blue skies as they strolled through Tom Byrne Park. Attendees shopped and visited with each other as young dancers from Heather Leonard Dance Works and baton-twirlers from Limitless Twirlers of Lower Alabama kept them entertained.
Singer-songwriter Jason Crysell performed his songs and covers of others, and children bounced on inflatables or took rides on ponies and a miniature train.
Food and drink of all sorts were available, and long lines formed at the various vendor stations, especially those that sold cold drinks and frozen concoctions.
“If you can’t find something to eat out here, you ain’t looking hard enough,” commented Mayor Jim Staff.
Projected rain never materialized, making the day almost too perfect. Temperatures climbed into the mid-80s by noon, causing some to end their visit.
“I didn’t know it was going to be this hot,” said Shameika Barron of Evergreen as she and daughters Tiana and Shania sought the shade of a small tree. “I think we’ve had about all the fun we can stand for one day.”
Atmore First Assembly’s Royal Rangers — Trevor Nall, Josh Hetrick, Logan Diller, Easton Norton — presented the colors prior to the festivities, Carley Hetrick Dempsey sang the National Anthem, and Chris McGhee’s prayer got things started.
Highlights included the introduction of the winners from the previous night’s Miss Mayfest Pageant, and the Beautiful Baby Contest, which drew more than 30 entries. (Winners are listed below.)
Beautiful Baby Contest
*Under 1 year old: (Boy) Charlie Geck, son of Bradley and Brooke Geck; (Girl) Ronni Kayte Nicole Rolin, daughter of Marshall and Amber Rolin.
*1 year old: (Boy) Ezra Kirkland, son of Rebekah Patti and Matthew Kirkland; (Girl) Mazleigh Price, daughter of Matthew and Britain Price.
*2 years old: (Boy) Jaheem Durant Jr., son of Kirsi Crawley and the late Jaheen Durant Sr.; (Girl) Charleigh-Grace Green, daughter of Kennedy and Blake Green.
*3 years old: (Boy) Jaxson Alexander, son of Samuel and Haleigh Alexander; (Girl) Anna Joe Marie Amerson, daughter of David and Dallas Amerson
Winners of Friday’s pageant, each of whom was judged on poise, talent and an interview, were as follows:
Miss Mayfest
Winner — Ashkia Weaver
1st Runner-Up — Paisley Donaldson
2nd Runner-Up — Mary Elise Kent
3rd Runner-Up — Caroline Reagan Dove
Best Personality — Paisley Donaldson
Best Smile — Ashkia Weaver
Best Dressed — Mary Elise Kent
Most Photogenic — Ashkia Weaver
Best Walk — Ashkia Weaver
Best Hair — Mary Elise Kent
Miss Congeniality — Caroline Regan Dove
Young Miss Mayfest
Winner — Addison Green
1st Runner-Up — Alia Livingston
2nd Runner-Up — Marlie McGhee
People’s Choice — Marlie McGhee
Best Smile — Kaylee Herndon
Best Dressed — Alia Livingston
Most Photogenic — Addison Green
Best Walk — Addison Green
Best Hair — Marlie McGhee
Miss Congeniality — Alia Livingston
Junior Miss Mayfest
Winner — Avaiha Colbert
1st Runner-Up — Marlee Sims
2nd Runner-Up — Ambry Proctor
Best Personality — Avaiha Colbert
Best Smile — Kadahlyn Salter
Best Dressed — Kadahlyn Salter
Most Photogenic — Avaiha Colbert
Best Walk — Kadahlyn Salter
Best Hair — Avaiha Colbert
Miss Congeniality — Nyla Johnson
Petite Miss Mayfest
Winner — Mercy Bender
1st Runner-Up — Laura Kate Lee
2nd Runner-Up — Lyric Nicole Gordon
Best Personality — Mercy Bender
Best Smile — Mercy Bender
Best Dressed — Laura Kate Lee
Most Photogenic — Laura Kate Lee
Best Walk — Blaklee Skye Himes
Best Hair — Lux Kate Nall
Miss Congeniality — Bristol Perdue
Little Miss Mayfest
Winner — Oaklee Jo Flowers
1st Runner-Up — Ava Brielle Culliver
2nd Runner-Up — Emmerlyn Breeze Hodges
3rd Runner-Up — Ava Raye Klyczek
Miss Congeniality — Ava Raye Klyczek
Best Dressed — Oaklee Jo Flowers
Best Hair — Oaklee Jo Flowers
Best Personality — Oaklee Jo Flowers
Most Photogenic — Ava Brielle Culliver
Best Walk — Ava Brielle Culliver
Best Smile — Ava Brielle Culliver