RALEIGH — As many towns cancel their annual Christmas parades and holiday performances are limited by government restrictions, one North Carolina group is launching a new holiday event to fill the void. The Miss North Carolina organization – the group who crowns North Carolina’s contestant for Miss America – will host its inaugural Christmas Spectacular Saturday night.
The virtual Christmas Spectacular will feature the reigning Miss North Carolina, Alexandra Badgett, and Miss North Carolina’s Outstanding Teen, Karlee Sanderford. Performer Michelle Braxton, of Goldsboro, will serve as the host and the event is produced by Miss North Carolina 2017 Victoria Huggins who is currently the manager of community and media relations for the Fayetteville Woodpeckers baseball team.
The show will feature several Miss North Carolina winners from years past and will focus on a variety show format to showcase singers and dancers. Huggins called the show “family-friendly” and said the show would also feature a story time and special tribute to Asheboro native Lane Ragsdale, a longtime Miss North Carolina volunteer who recently passed away.
Miss North Carolina – and Miss America – was postponed for the 2020 year and contestants, volunteers, and fans have not gathered for live events since a springtime pageant that occurred before large events were barred by Gov. Roy Cooper. “The biggest challenge was coordinating all of the virtual, in-person, sponsorship, and production aspects,” said Huggins. “I’m thrilled that 30 Miss North Carolinas from six decades will grace the screen throughout the program.” Two former Miss North Carolina’s Outstanding Teen winners, Carolina Credle (’18) and Marissa Garrison (’17) will also perform. Garrison is currently featured on the CMT reality show “Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making The Team” where she is competing for a spot on the famous cheer squad.
A return to the stage, even a virtual one, by Miss North Carolina is intended as a way to brighten the spirits of North Carolinians. “One of the things I have missed most from not being able to gather with our Miss North Carolina family is enjoying these incredible talented women, both former Miss North Carolinas and our reigning state and local titleholders,” said Beth Knox, executive director. “It will be such a treat to watch so many perform for us again, all on one night.”