The Maple Leaf Festival has a queen.
Carthage High School student Lydia Youngworth earned the crown Sunday evening and also earned top honors in the School Days, Modeling and Talent categories.
Youngworth, who plans to attend the University of Kansas after graduation, notched the talent award with a dance to the song “Say Something” by A Great Big World. She is a member of the Royal Tigarettes Dance Team and has been dancing for more than 10 years. She also dances at Ovation Studios and has earned numerous dance competition awards.
In her contestant’s statement, Youngworth said that the Maple Leaf Festival is about families.
“The the Maple Leaf Festival has always brought famiLy and friends close together to have a good time, and I simply just love the atmosphere of Carthage and all the traditions,” she wrote. “I will return to Carthage or close by when I achieve my career ambitions and start to raise a family. I know I will always return for the wonderful festivities of this great time of year, and I will especially do so when I have my own children, so they can experience it as I do today.”
Youngworth plans to study psychology in college, but right now at CHS she swims for the aquatic team and the Lady Tigers swim team.
Youngworth received a crown and sash as well as a $1,000 scholarship award.
Elizabeth Poe joined Youngworth in the Maple Leaf court as the first runner up. Poe also won the Interviewing category. Poe’s honor comes with a $500 scholarship. She plans to become a speech pathologist and attend the University of Arkansas after graduating from CHS.
A mission trip to Guatemala City has made her want to help more kids in third-world countries.
Alexis Maggard, also a student at CHS, was honored as the second runner up. Maggard wants to attend the University of Arkansas and major in special education.
She one day hopes to use the skills she displayed in the talent section of the pageant to open a twirling studio for students with special needs. Maggard’s finish netted her a $300 scholarship.
Earlier in the day, pageants named Little Miss Maple Leaf Olivia Rehle, Little Mister Maple Leaf Jamie Hill, Junior Miss Maple Leaf Elizabeth Blankinship and the Maple Leaf Princess Chloe Orschein.