Allie All the Way

Allie Fuquay is crowned Miss West Johnston 2018 by Miss West Johnston Abby Britt and Alasia Richardson. Photographed by Makayla Brown.

The spotlight focuses center stage, eyes giving their undivided attention as seven young women campaign with the hopes of becoming the next Miss West Johnston.

The winner of the 2018 Miss West Johnston pageant was sophomore Allie Fuquay. This isn’t the first time Fuquay has won a pageant though, previously winning Little Miss Johnston County in 2016.

With a busy schedule, Fuquay is unable to participate in many extracurricular school events, so when the opportunity was presented to participate in the Miss West J pageant, she did not hesitate to seize it.

“I have a lot of dance and singing practices, but I wasn’t able to do dance team, so I decided I’d do Miss West J to get more active with the school,” Fuquay said.

To prepare herself for the pageant, Fuquay underwent extensive training, practicing nearly every night for 30 minutes to an hour. Her training regimen consisted of a variety of parts for the pageant.

“I practiced my walk, made sure I knew my application, and watched videos to know how to do well on the interview,” Fuquay said. “Of course, I practiced my talent, too, which was singing Black Horse and the Cherry Tree.”

Fuquay’s preparation also included finding numerous outfits, from casual wear to a dresses. Fuquay had to quickly change her outfit many times, during which she would perform a minor practice for the next presentation.

“When I would transition, I had to just, like, take a breather and slowly prepare myself and try not to be nervous,” Fuquay said.

Now that she is Miss West J, Fuquay has a lot of community responsibility on her shoulders. She wishes to involve herself heavily in community service, but with a twist platform – “teens helping teens”.

“I want to encourage teens to help other teens and children, because some can’t really help themselves, and I want to help those who really need it,” Fuquay said.

Fuquay’s concern for fellow teens goes deeper, however. In addition to giving service to needy youth, Fuquay wants to create a musical addressing issues such as depression and anxiety among teenagers.

Competing against the upperclassmen, Fuquay was nervous, due to her perceived reputation of some of her opponents, the juniors and seniors, to win school pageants. All the same, she did not allow her anxiety to control her, and remained at peak performance to give it her all in hopes she may just come out victorious.

“I thought they were gonna give it to an upperclassmen, because it’s those students who have won in the past,” Fuquay said, “and I was very nervous, but figured out as I was competing that my class wasn’t standing in the way of me winning.”

Reflecting on her victory, Fuquay formed a new view on competing against difficult odds, and gave words of wisdom to any who may one day be in a similar position to her in the pageant.

“Don’t put yourself down because the competition is older than you,” Fuquay said. “Age has  nothing to do with winning. It doesn’t matter if you’re a freshman or a senior, if they have  a freshman who they think would make the best Miss West J, they’re gonna pick her over the senior. If you underestimate yourself, you won’t be as confident and will only make the situation worse.”