Ten-year-old Hannah Hodge has been busy competing in quite a few beauty pageants lately. First the USA Ambassador Nationals in Florida in July, then the West Coast Fabulous Faces in Eugene and, most recently, the Oregon state Raindrop Pageant in Portland, where she was awarded the "2012 Oregon State Raindrop Pageant Overall Petite Miss" title or overall queen.
"It felt great (to win) because I'd been working so hard," Hannah said. "All my work has just finally paid off."
When Hannah attends these pageants, she doesn't just participate. She comes out on top in quite a few categories: first in spokesmodel, glamour photogenic, talent supreme, best model, best costume, best smile and best raingear to name a few.
"I like to wear the outfits and stuff, but I really love to make new friends," Hannah said. "I have friends almost across the whole United States."
She also enjoys having her hair done, she said.
Hannah has been participating in pageants for about two-and-a-half years.
At the raindrop competition, she modeled rain gear, evening wear and an outfit of choice; participated in photogenic, a photo submission category; was a spokesmodel for a national charity (Hannah chose Toys for Tots) and twirled a baton to "Sunshine, Lollipops and Rainbows" by Lesley Gore.
Beforehand, she was required to partake in a two-minute interview with all five judges. She was interviewing for the position of Overall Petite Miss, her mom, Sarah Hodge said. The judges looked at her poise, how she sat at the table and how she represented herself while answering questions about her favorite memory, TV show and charity.
"She did really well," Sarah said. "She's been working with a pageant coach who has been helping her with her speaking."
For the pageants Hannah participates in, community service is a big component, and each participant is required to pick a charity.
"It's one way that these young ladies understand there are organizations that support (people) who are less fortunate than themselves," said Hannah's dad, John Hodge. "It's expanding their knowledge of community service and what it means to be a person who gives back to the community."
Hannah chose Toys for Tots because "I usually have so many toys after my birthday (Dec. 17), so I wanted to give some to kids who don't really get any toys for Christmas," she said. "I'm just really proud that I get to share some of my toys with kids that are less fortunate (whose) parents don't have enough money to buy them toys every Christmas. That's why I donate toys to Toys for Tots."
Now that she was crowned Overall Petite Miss, Hannah will participate in the 2013 National United Petite Miss Pageant in January in Portland.