LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) -- Little Rock welcomed the Miss Arkansas Scholarship Pageant for the first time ever this week, making history for the organization.
Wednesday night begins the second portion of competition for those hoping to secure an opportunity of a lifetime. The week for these ladies started Sunday with an arrival ceremony at the state capitol.
This year is filled with many firsts for the pageant. Its combined with the teen program, on a new stage, and in a new home.
“The most amazing part about this experience is being here at the Robinson,” said Kelsey Stone, Miss Arkansas Tech University.
The organization and those who love it are celebrating 80 years of sparkle, heels, and history.
“They have rolled out the red carpet out for us, it has been incredible,” Bailey Moses said, Miss Northeast Arkansas.
Once in Hot Springs for several decades, Little Rock now hosts this tradition.
“We're so excited to be here. We've been welcomed with open arms to the beautiful Robinson Performance Hall and many of the community events that we've been able to participate in this week,” Jessie Bennet said, Executive Director of the pageant organization.
Everyone involved continues to brag on this new and exciting change.
“I hear people in the audience whispering where is this and where is that? We're all learning new routines,” said Bennett.
The pageant partnered with the Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau to hosts activities during the week. Competing on stage isn’t all the contestants do, they're also involved in the community.
Their week is filled with rotary club visits, activities in the community, and spending time with their Diamond State Princesses, the organization’s mentoring program.
"The town, the Chamber of Commerce, and everyone have been so welcoming and exciting. It's made this week such a unique experience and like any other year,” Moses said.
This is her fourth year participating in Miss Arkansas.
Miss Arkansas Scholarship Pageant underway in Little Rock for the first time ever
The girls compete in phases like private interview, on-stage question, swimsuit, evening gown, and talent. And as if their schedules aren’t already busy enough, they’re up at the crack of dawn for production rehearsals.
“We've had a good time so far, rehearsals have gone pretty well,” said Miss Arkansas Savannah Skidmore.
She’ll crown her successor this weekend. We’ve got 44 young women competing for one crown. Last night’s preliminary competition winners, Stone and Moses, are still feeling the energy.
"It's so nice being in an actual theatre, it feels like a real production,” Moses said.
There's no place like a new home and there's no place like the capitol city.
"Being on the stage in front of thousands, I love it! I can’t wait to be on stage again tonight,” said Stone.
Friday night a new Miss Arkansas' Outstanding Teen will be crowned and Saturday night a new 80th Anniversary Miss Arkansas will be crowned in the Robinson Center. Meet the new reigning title holder live Monday on THV11 This Morning.