Pitsenbarger crowned 40th Little Miss Poultry Days


By Meladi Brewer


VERSAILLES — Lillian Pitsenbarger crowned 40th Little Miss Poultry Days.

The 40th annual Little Miss Poultry Days Contest is a small town staple during the Poultry Days Celebration. This chicken obsessed festival provides excitement to the Village of Versailles, as participants dress up in chicken themed gowns and compete for that year’s tiara.

The Master of Ceremonies, Ken DeMange, has been hosting the Little Miss Poultry Days and Miss Chick contests since 1989. He continues to come back due to the enjoyment he gets from the festival. He said watching the young ladies gain confidence is what it is all about.

“I so much enjoy the expressions on their faces, they get to dress up and have so much fun, and I just want to make it fun for them because they are special and all winners,” DeMange said.

He said it is hard to pick a winner, but DeMange’s favorite part is the fact that you never know what the girls are going to say.

“I’ve had many years of some really dandy answers,” DeMange said.

Contestants were asked an array of questions to show their stage presence and confidence in front of an audience. A young lady stated she would love to be a vet when she gets older because she loves animals, especially horses. Others answered with a doctor or nurse because they like to help people.

“I want to be a math teacher because I like math,” Sadie Barton of Versailles, said.

The questions are geared towards getting the young lady to open up and show their personality through their likes and interests.

“I really believe it takes a lot of courage for these five-, six-, and seven year-olds to stand up in a full house like this and speak to someone they don’t know and have never met prior to coming,” DeMange said.

DeMange said he admires their courage. Last years Little Miss Poultry Days, Evelyn Sutter encouraged any little girl and current contestants to continue to run if they can. She said the experience was exciting.

“If you can keep doing it, do it,” Sutter said. “It’s fun. You get to be in parades, get lots of candy, and get your picture taken. When you get older, you can compete in Miss Chick.”

Miss Chick is the high school competition during Poultry Days. The 2023 – 2024 Miss Chick, Isabel Rawlins encouraged the youth to compete when they get older saying it is a great experience, and she believes it is important to have strong women participate.

“From what I can see and what I heard, you all seem like great leaders, and we would love to have you in Miss Chick,” Rawlins said. “We love to see strong, independent woman come together, and I am so glad that you all are here.”

Miss Chick and Little Miss Poultry Days is all about empowerment and creating a “confident chick”. These young women are someone others can look up to as a sign of poise and confidence.

Congratulations to the 2024-2025 Little Miss Poultry Days Lillian Pitsenbarger, 6, of Versailles, 1st Runner-Up Sadie Barton, 6, of Versailles, and 2nd Runner-Up Hattie Hein, 6, of Statesboro,GA.

To contact Daily Advocate Reporter Meladi Brewer, email [email protected].

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