Criterion Club Holds Debutante Pageant

Submitted by
Dr. Miranda E. Manning, Historian

The Criterion Club held the Debutante Pageant for 2018 on March 3 at 6:00 p.m. at the Criterion Recreation Center in Dillon, South Carolina with the beautiful, efficient Ms. Tempestt Hough, of Dillon, serving as Mistress of Ceremony.
The auditorium was skillfully decorated befitting a pageant of elegance with white draping and artistically placed arrangements of peace lilies.
Mrs. Mary Alice Townsend gave the invocation followed by a hearty welcome from Sister Claretha Whitfield. Announced by Ms. Hough, The Grand March of the Debutantes began. The beautiful young ladies with their handsome male escorts, were regal in appearance Debutantes were wearing formal white elegant ball gowns of various designs and Junior Debutantes in pastel colors.
Debutantes Ja’Bria Harley, daughter of Sandra Harley, and Carol “Pete” Arnette, a senior at Dillon High School, Makela Pompey, daughter of Lakisha Pompey and the late Markus Foster, a senior at Dillon High School, Jua’Myai Bethea, daughter of Charmane Bethea and Jerry Bethea, a senior at Dillon High School, La’Brea Harley, daughter of Sandra Harley and Carol “Pete” Arnette, a senior at Dillon High School were the Senior Debutantes.
The Junior Debutantes were Justice English, daughter of Angela and Andre Thompson and Timothy English, a junior at Dillon High School, and Hannah Bethea, daughter of Labreen and Berrie Bethea, a junior at Lake View High School.

The Debutantes swayed and sang in melodious voices their special “Debutante Selection.”
Sister Betty Gunter introduced the judges: Mrs. Sharon Temoney-Davis from Latta, Ms. Tabitha D. James from Lake View, and Ms. Shawna McLellan of Dillon. Music was provided by Mr. Adrian Wright.
Ms. Hough introduced the guest talent. Elite Dance Company is under the direction of Krystal Ladson and their performance included a dance to “All I Have To Give” and “God Is Trying To Tell You Something” and Miss Lakisha Pompey of Dillon sang “He’s Able.’
Bishop Calvin Pompey accompanied her on the keyboard. Miss Pompey is also the mother of Debutante Makela Pompey.
The Criterion members and the numerous former Debutantes present were presented by Sister Corine Rawlison followed by Debutante Reflections by Miss Mar’Nija Lewis, Debutante 2017.
The first segment of Debutante was an onstage interview with Ms. Hough and assisted by Miss Mar’Nija Lewis, Debutante 2017.
The special highlights of Debutante Talent and Fashion were presented by Ms. Hough.

The Awards and Presentations were announced by Ms. Hough and President Jackie Thomas assisted with trophy presentation.
Each Debutante received trophies in the following categories: The Panel Interview Winners was Hannah Bethea.
The Presentation Award Winners were Ja’Bria Harley and Hannah Bethea, who tied for this award.
The Onstage Interview Award Winner was La’Brea Harley.
The Academic Winner was La’Brea Harley and Miss Congeniality was Makela Pompey. Talent
Winners were: First place: Justic English, Second place was a tie between Makela Pompey and Jua’Myai Bethea, and Third place Hannah Bethea. Fashion Winners were: First place, Justice English, Second place, La’Brea Harley, and Third place, Ja’Bria Harley. The President’s Award was given to Jua’Myai Bethea. Ms. Hough introduced Jr. Debutante 2017, La’Brea Harley, and Debutante 2017, Mar’Nija Lewis. Debutante Lewis took a final stroll.

Jr. Debutante for 2018 was Hannah Bethea. She was presented a trophy, Sash, a Bouquet of Flowers and took the Winners Runway Walk. First Runner-Up was Justice English. She received a Trophy, Sash and a Bouquet of Flowers.
Miss Debutante 2018 was Makela Pompey. She was crowned, presented a trophy, Sash, a Bouquet of Flowers and took the Winners Runway Walk.
The First Runner-Up was Ja’Bria Harley. She received a Trophy, Sash and a Bouquet of Flowers. Debutantes and Junior Debutantes of 2018 will be awarded a Scholarship.

A sincere thank you to Kadra Wright McQueen, The Debutante Committee Chairperson, and The Debutante Committee—you are to be commended for your guidance, talent and diligence in the preparation and successful completion of this Cotillion. A job well done!
Miss Betty Swinton, Mr. Maurice Robinson, Ms. Anna Coaxum and Mr. Sterling Lee were also thanked for their assistance for making the Cotillion a success.
A heartfelt thank you to our Debutantes, Parents, Escorts, Sponsors, and Friends for your contributions to our “Evening of Elegance.”

The Criterion Club Debutante Cotillion 2018!
The Criterion Club’s inception was in 1945; The Motto: Let Every Woman Do Her Duty; Colors, Green and White, The Flower, White Gladiolus.

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