Local pageant contestants are preparing their walks, routines, smiles and speeches for their chance to represent Val Verde County for one year.
Sixteen girls will compete for the crown at the Miss Val Verde pageant starting at 6:30 p.m. Saturday at the Paul Poag Theatre. The girls have been preparing for the pageant since October and, according to pageant Claudia Lopez, the contestants are eager to compete.
The event’s theme, “Dancing With the Stars,” reflects the group of girls who decided to participate in the pageant this year, Lopez said.
“Every year we try to go with the personalities of girls. A lot of them are dancers,” Lopez said. “They’re doing a mix of dances through the decades. It will be interesting and entertaining.”
The contestants will be judged in five categories, including a panel interview and a photogenic judgement that will take place in the morning of the pageant and is not open to the public. The main event will include a fitness wear competition, a “Meet the Press” event and an evening gown category.
Seven girls will compete at the “teen” level, which considers contestants between sixth and eighth grade, and nine girls will compete in the “miss” level, which considers contestants between ninth and 12th grade.
Miss Teen Val Verde
Isabella Sauceda is the 12-year-old daughter of Edwardo Sauceda and Chérie Marr. Isabella is in sixth grade and aspires to be a mariachi and a QCB member. She plans to take dual credit courses in high school and wants to eventually pursue a career as a veterinarian and run a foundation for unwanted or injured animals. Her hobbies include taking care of animals, cooking, dancing, playing guitar and piano, watching romantic comedies, helping her mom and reading about animals and aquatic life.
Andrea Padilla is the 12-year-old daughter of Antonio and Natalie Padilla. She is in seventh grade and attends Del Rio Middle School. Andrea aspires to become a veterinarian. She has several hobbies, including camping, swimming and being outdoors. She is an avid reader and also spends a lot of time in the gym alongside her mom, who is her personal trainer. Andrea enjoys spending time in the kitchen baking her favorite recipes with her little brother, Tony.
Adamari Isabel Grijalva is the 12-year-old daughter of Juan Dominguez and Melinda Velasquez. She is in sixth grade and attends San Felipe Memorial Middle School. Adamari aspires to become a singer. Her hobbies are singing, cooking, drawing and painting.
Andrea Lopez is the 13-year-old daughter of Luis Lopez and Monyca Garcia. She is in eighth grade at DRMS. She aspires to become a professional chef. She enjoys music, sports and organizing.
Lorena Torres is the 13-year-old daughter of Juan Francisco Torres and Azucena Villanueva. She is in eighth grade at DRMS. She aspires to become a trauma surgeon. She enjoys learning about world history from the Holocaust to the U.S. Civil War.
Andrea Mota is the 14-year-old daughter of Nora Lizeth Mandujano and Julio Mota. She is in eighth grade at DRMS. She aspires to become a veterinarian and her passion has always been dance, consisting of jazz, tap, ballet and pointe.
Serena Sandoval is the 12-year-old daughter of Ema Vasquez and Roberto Sandoval. She attends DRMS, where she is in seventh grade. Serena enjoys competitive cheer and modeling.
Miss Val Verde
Thalia Reyna Lantgen is the 15-year-old daughter of Timothy and Alejandra Lantgen. She is in ninth grade and attends Del Rio Freshman School. She dreams of becoming a bilingual teacher and a professional model. Her hobbies include drawing, baking and singing.
Ashley Villarreal is the 17-year-old daughter of Sandra Cisneros. She describes herself as artistic, intelligent, creative and dedicated. She loves all kinds of art, including modeling. She follows her dreams and does the impossible to achieve them. She loves to spend time with family and helping others.
Reyna Haynes is the 16-year-old daughter of Amy Haynes. She is a junior at DRHS. Reyna aspires to become a chef. Her hobbies are dancing, cooking and having fun with family and friends.
Alejandra Torres is the 15-year-old daughter of Juan Francisco Torres and Azucena Villanueva. She is a sophomore at DRHS and aspires to become a pediatric endocrinologist. Her hobbies are track and field, modeling, acting and spending quality time with family and friends.
Janelle Dominguez is the 16-year-old daughter of Jose and Delia Dominguez. She is in the 10th grade at DRHS. She would like to become a registered nurse. She loves staying active, dancing, laughing, trying new things and enjoying time with friends and family.
Fernanda Garcia is the 16-year-old daughter of Jose and Rosa Garcia. She is in the 10th grade at DRHS. Fernanda aspires to one day become an orthopedic surgeon. She enjoys flag football, going to the gym and spending time with family and friends.
Ixel Frescas is the 16-year-old daughter of Vicente and Yesenia Vejarano. She is in 10th grade at DRHS. She would like to become a film producer. Her hobbies are dancing and playing basketball.
Sarahí Lombraña is the 15-year-old daughter of Raymundo Lombrana and late Rafaela Salazar. She is in the10th grade and attends Del Rio High School. Sarahí aspires to become a great leader for everyone in a future as a powerful person. Her hobbies are dancing and choreographing dances, exercising and writing.
Nadia Martinez is the 17-year-old daughter of Rene and Cynthia Martinez. She is a junior at Early College High School. She aspires to attend UTSA and become a registered nurse. She enjoys running, cheer, dance and playing the violin.