Hattiesburg, MS (January 19, 2022) – The Mississippi Miss Hospitality Competition officially began accepting at-large contestant applications this week. Eligible individuals who reside in a Mississippi community without an established local program are encouraged to apply to participate in the 2023 competition.
Now in its 74th year, the Mississippi Miss Hospitality program brings together the state’s best and brightest young women for a week of leadership development as they ultimately compete for the state title and more than $100,000 in scholarships and prizes. The winner will serve as Mississippi’s Goodwill Ambassador for economic development and tourism, traveling to promote the state through ribbon cuttings, special tourism events, organized appearances, and speaking engagements.
“The Mississippi Miss Hospitality advisory board created the at-large opportunity four years ago, and it has proven to be an excellent opportunity for those who were not previously qualified to participate,” Kristen Brock, Mississippi Miss Hospitality program director, said. “Through the at-large program, more women are able to vie for scholarships and champion their hometowns for a year while gaining invaluable experience and relationships.”
Last year, an at-large contestant won the state title for the first time in program history. Hannah Grace Crain of Hernando has already traveled thousands of miles sharing Mississippi’s story with residents and visitors. She will crown the state’s next Goodwill Ambassador in Hattiesburg this July.
Eligible applicants are women between the ages of 18 and 24, residents of Mississippi, high school graduates, and have a 2.5 or higher scholastic average. Additionally, contestants must represent their hometowns, not the community where they attend college.
At-large applications will be accepted by the State Office through Friday, March 3. The 2023 competition guide, contestant requirements, and current application can be found at MissHospitality.com. An independent panel will select contestants from the at-large candidate pool based upon an established scoring criterion.
This year’s Mississippi Miss Hospitality competition will be held at the historic Saenger Theater in downtown Hattiesburg on July 14 and 15, 2023. Ticket sales will be announced on the program’s social media pages and website in late spring 2023.