Contestant's Life Experiences Inspire City Employees

CORPUS CHRISTI, TX -  For 22 years, the Senior Community Services team has produced the Ms. Coastal Bend Senior Pageant. They begin planning the summer competition nine months prior to the event and say a lot has changed over the years when it comes to preparing for the show.

"We used to have to do everything manually," said Senior Community Services Superintendent Lisa Oliver. "We've gone from putting the music on cassettes to using compact discs or digital, which is a lot easier."

Getting the music just right was important to the 2017 Ms. Coastal Bend Senior Mae Kelley, whose talent was converting lyrics into sign language. The 61 year old Calallen High School teacher competed against seven other women. Employees say it is an honor to work with the contestants who they say are role models.

"This pageant takes these women out of their comfort zone and it shows us despite what they've been through in life, they've persevered and continue to have that desire to excel," said Oliver.

Organizers are quick to point out the event is not a beauty pageant. Instead, they say it is a celebration of the age of elegance and for the contestants, it shows how confidence and grace only get better with age.