Allisan Feinberg, Canton resident and artist, has the honor of representing Georgia in the National Miss Amazing Pageant for girls and women with disabilities in Chicago.
To help support the cost, her mom, Lisa, is working with local musicians to host a benefit concert at Connect Live, a local venue and music studio, on July 12.
Pageants were not on Allisan’s mind until she found out her friend was participating in Miss Amazing, a pageant system designed to help girls and women with special needs and disabilities gain social skills and confidence. She wanted to spend time with her friend and try something new, so she gave the pageant a try. Little did she know she would be planning a trip to Chicago to compete with other state winners in just a few months.
“It was a little hard,” Allisan said. “I was nervous. But I conquered my fear of being on stage and showing my artwork. When I got my trophy, sash and crown, I was just in shock.”
The Georgia pageant was a full day consisting of classes to encourage confidence and good social skills, private interviews with judges, practice on poise and how to walk and talk on stage, then the talent portion and an evening dress portion. The pageant also provides a “buddy” for every girl as support and to help with confidence.
For her talent, Allisan chose to bring her art on stage and describe it to the audience and the judges. She is currently working on new pieces to bring to the national pageant.
“My favorite parts were showing my artwork and getting my hair and makeup done,” Allisan said.
“It was just amazing,” Lisa said. “They brought in hair and makeup professionals from Atlanta to do all the girls’ hair and makeup and make them feel special.”
The national pageant will have the same format and will host over 150 girls from across the United States competing for the title. It will take place Aug. 2-4, and to help cover the cost of traveling with family and friends to Chicago, Lisa is throwing a benefit concert in Woodstock featuring local talent.
“Mary Kate Farmer was her buddy at the pageant,” Lisa said, “and she is going to be her buddy at the national pageant too. So she is helping us organize and performing at the concert to help raise funds.”
The concert will be held at 7 p.m. on July 12 at Connect Live, 6835 Victory Drive. It will feature artists including Carter Lloyd Horne from “The Voice,” Mary Kate Farmer, Codey Bearden, Table for Two, The Last Chance Riders, JST FRNDS, Owl Creek Band and Tyler Jarvis of “American Idol” fame.
Tickets are $10 preorder and $15 at the door. They can be purchased online at www.prekindle.com/events/connectlive2 or call 972-890-3411.
“This whole experience just touches you. There aren’t the same opportunities for special needs people that there are for the general public to shine and to show their talents. You always want the best for your kid and this is just such a special opportunity.”
To donate to Allisan’s pageant fund, visit her “Queen Page” at sponsoraqueen2019.funraise.org/fundraiser/allisan-feinberg.
Miss Amazing was started in 2007 and is now in 32 states. Their mission is to provide opportunities for girls and women with disabilities to build confidence and self-esteem in a supportive environment through nurturing a sisterhood, building life skills and increasing visibility.
For more details or to get involved, visit www.missamazing.org.