Raven Delk has wanted to be in a pageant ever since she first saw the Miss America pageant when she was knee-high to a grasshopper.
“When I was younger, I just wanted to have that feeling of being a princess and wearing the crown and the sash,” the seventh-grader said.
Raven’s parents, Scott and Teikeshia, didn’t like the idea of their little girl getting all dolled up and looking like a fashion model. But then Teikeshia came across a pageant that emphasizes natural beauty, education and community service.
Raven was a runner-up at that pageant, Miss American Coed, two years ago. In July, she walked away with the Miss California Pre-Teen crown. She’ll compete for the national title in November in Florida.
“Of course, I hope that I win,” Raven said. “I’m really looking forward to it because I’m excited about meeting all the other state representatives. I’m excited about going to Disney World.”
Raven, 12, was awarded a crown, sash and $1,250 in college scholarship money from the
Northern California pageant that was held in in July. Dozens of girls competed in her age group, and 15 advanced to the finals. Santa Clara
Raven also won the talent competition for playing the piano and singing the Mandy Moore tune “Only Hope.” It’s the same song Raven performed at Hart’s talent show.
One of the reasons Raven and her parents like the Miss American Coed pageant is that girls 13 and under are not allowed to wear makeup or provocative outfits.
“I’m glad I can do a pageant that’s about academics, achievements and being talented and poised,” Raven said.
Raven looks forward to representing
and promoting her platform of bringing attention to childhood cancer. It’s an issue that touched her heart when she was in third grade and saw kids tease a younger girl at school who was battling cancer. California
“It was so sad for me to see her go through all of that,” Raven said. “I knew what I wanted to do is help kids with cancer. I want to be a pediatric oncologist when I grow up. That’s my goal – to help kids with cancer.”
Raven wants people to know that not all pageants are about big hair, glittery outfits and excessive makeup.
“It’s smart, talented girls who want to make a difference, support their community and get money for college,” she said proudly. “It’s been a really great experience.”
Posted August 21, 2008