When she entered her first pageant last year, the outgoing girl from Elkhart never thought she would come as far as she has.
Hailey Volz, 9, was recently named Miss Iowa Junior Pre-Teen Cover Girl in the National American Miss pageant. She was awarded the title after selling the most ads – five pages worth – for the pageant booklet out of all the other 7- to 9-year-olds in the contest.
"I was really excited," Hailey said of being crowned Cover Girl. She received a banner and crown for her title.
As Cover Girl, Hailey’s mom, Stephanie, said Hailey will do some community service projects in Elkhart. She will also meet with Elkhart’s mayor and fire chief to introduce herself and see if there is anything she can do to help in the community.
This is Hailey’s second year of participating in pageants. Her interest in pageants stemmed from a letter she received in the mail from the National American Miss organization, seeking young girls who would be interested in competing in the pageants. Stephanie said Hailey convinced her dad, Todd, to take her to an informational meeting to learn more about the program. Hailey was later chosen as one of hundreds of girls who would go on to compete in the pageants.
In preparation for this year’s pageant, Hailey said she had to practice her speech and try on "lots of dresses." Each of the girls participating in the pageant were required to give a speech, explaining a little about themselves. In her speech, Hailey said she talked about her egg business and all the chickens she raises to produce the eggs. The girls were also interviewed by the judges and had to walk out on stage with their dads and in their formal wear.
The Cover Girl title is not the only award she has won since entering her first pageant last year. Hailey has also won trophies for Miss Personality, Most Ticket Sales Runner-up, Most Recommendations and Art Contest First Runner-up. In all, she has brought home nine pageant trophies.
"At first, I didn’t think I would win anything," Hailey said of when she entered her first pageant.
Getting so many trophies is what Hailey enjoys about the pageants, but she also likes getting all dressed up to compete and becoming friends with the other girls.
Looking ahead, this will probably be Hailey’s last year of competing in the pageants. With her involvement in several different sports, as well as her egg business and helping on the family farm, the young girl’s schedule is pretty full. Though she may be hanging up her crown, she is not leaving without having gained important life-long skills.
"She’s learned how to conduct an interview, how to have fun and be proper," Stephanie said.