By Kassandra Gutierrez
EXETER – On Monday night, the Exeter Chamber of Commerce hosted the annual dinner event for the crowning the 2017 Miss Exeter at the Faith Tabernacle Family Center. The venue was full, as nearly 300 guests showed up, to watch the candidates compete one last time before the final judging and crowning of Miss Exeter.
Ashley Howell, an Exeter high school senior, and daughter of Bernie and Lara Howell, was crowned Miss Exeter. She says “It’s honestly a dream come true, this is my hometown and I have been here forever, and it just really feels great to be able to represent my town.” Howell says, “I look forward to lots of fun and I’m really excited for the parade and especially the fall festival”.
Howell plans to attend BYU Hawaii after high school, and later attend medical school, her ultimate goal is to become a family practitioner.
Although there was only one crowned Miss Exeter, the group was made up of twelve driven and smart young ladies, who were all happy to be there and proud to be living in a small community and representing their hometown, Exeter.
Taelor Hire, Miss Exeter runner up was also extremely excited, “It’s a wonderful feeling knowing that I’m supporting my community, it’s just wonderful, I love it. I look forward to being someone that the younger girls can look up to, as well as being involved in my community, just like I have been for a really long time.” Hire, plans to attend a 4 year university and hopefully play soccer, as she has been playing for most of her life. Hire, is the daughter of Timothy and Nicole Hire, and was sponsored and escorted by Doctor Darren Rich.
Sponsors generally spend over a month with the candidates, Jim Tyler Construction sponsored this year’s crown winner.
“It’s awesome, she’s a good girl, the hard work was all her,” Tyler said. He went on to mention the most memorable moment was when he was able to get to know Howell and her family.
After the judging was over, the twelve contestants were able to take the stage one last time, during the event, before former Miss Exeter, Ashley Jones handed over the crown. As the girls were under no pressure of being judged, they were able to show off their different styles, wearing outfits which were all found at the Pink Ladies Thrift Store. The fashion show tends to be a fan favorite, as the girls are able to use their imagination and creativity, bringing to life characters dressed in clothes found at the local thrift shop.