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By BETH ZUMWALT
Alli Peterson attended the 2020 Miss Quincy Outstanding Teen pageant. She was in awe of the winner, Shelly Rose.
“She inspired me. I followed her throughout her journey as Outstanding Teen and here we are,” Peterson said after being crowned Rose’s successor. The pageant was not held in 2021 due to COVID.
Peterson has been active in the pageant circuit for several years. She was both Little Miss and Princess Winchester, Princess at the Western Illinois Fair in Griggsville and competed in the Miss County Fair Princess pageant.
Still, she called Saturday night’s pageant “nerve wracking.”
“I was really nervous the minute I stepped on stage,” she said.
Her nerves subsided and Peterson made a memorable presence on stage, including her dance in the talent competition. She performed a jazz dance to “Glam,” a song by Christina Aguilera. Emily Swanson, Peterson’s dance instructor at Emily’s Studio, helped her choreograph the number.
Peterson said the contest ran so smoothly and everything was well organized.
“The theme was “Miss Quincy Takes Flight,” she said. “They had this really cool backdrop of a plane. our group dance was “Come Fly With Me.”
Each candidate is required to have a social platform and Peterson chose social impact.
“I want to encourage people to get involved in their community,” she said.
“Encourage people to chip in. I plan to devise a way to share ways so people are knowledgeable about ways to help within the community.”
Peterson will now compete in the Illinois Outstanding Queen pageant June 6-11 in Marion.
Meanwhile, she will concentrate on school activities. She is a member of the Cougar Cheer squad, Lady Cougar volleyball team, softball team and dances competitively with Emily’s Dance Studio.
The group will head to Beardstown Jan. 29 for Showcase. Peterson will be involved in four different group routines.
Peterson said the only draw back to the pageant was she was forced to miss most of opening day of the Winchester Tournament.
“I had to be in Quincy at 10:20 for my interview,” she said. “I came back to Winchester in full hair and make-up, just to enjoy the tournament for a bit,before I had to go back to Quincy.”