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County well–represented at Miss Alabama

Jessica Andrews, a beautiful, talented dancer with a caring heart, has had a dream for the last four years –– to compete in the Miss Alabama Pageant.

As the reigning Miss Shelby County 2009, she will begin her quest June 3 as the Miss Alabama Pageant begins at Wright Fine Arts Auditorium at Samford University.

Andrews said she has been overwhelmed by the love and support she’s received from the community as Miss Shelby County. But she said if that is not God’s will for her, her year as Miss Shelby County has been a dream come true in itself.

Andrews has had an extraordinary year representing Shelby County. She sponsored the Miracle Music Concert in January featuring Eden’s Rain, Jamie Langley and The Lucky Stiffs. The concert raised more than $1,200 for the Children’s Miracle Network. This concert was to raise awareness and funds for the network, which is the Miss America platform.

Andrew’s personal platform is Passion Performance aimed at helping every child that wants to dance should be able to dance. Through her platform she has raised funds for dance scholarships to be given to deserving young girls. One of those young girls was Cassidy Schuttinga, a girl with terminal cancer who always wanted to dance. Schuttinga had five lessons at Joy’s Dance Studio before her death, achieving a lifelong dream during her four short years. Andrews has now endowed a scholarship in Schuttinga’s memory at the dance studio. Andrews has raised more than $9,000 for dance scholarships overall. She has also performed 1,897 hours of community service during her four years of competing in the Miss Alabama Pageant organization. She has visited and spoken at local hospices, read to young children, appeared at Liberty Day and parades. Throughout her reign, she continued to teach kindergarten at Meadow View Elementary School.

Recently she spoke and wore her Miss Alabama outfits at the April Vignette meeting, the AFWC club which sponsors the Miss Shelby Scholarship Program and Pageant. Andrews was especially thankful for all the help and support of the Vignettes namely, Melody Byrne, Hayden Jeffries and Carol Hill. It has been a wonderful, whirlwind year for Andrews and her dream continues as she competes in Miss Alabama this week.

For those young women who have a dream like Andrews, go to Misshelbycounty.org and see how to begin your quest.

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