The 30th Anniversary of the Miss Homestead Pageant held Saturday March 25, 2017, at the Seminole Theatre was a special reunion for fourteen women who previously held the title. Sitting in the audience they knew how much preparation each contestant had gone through.
It was a difficult decision for the judges who selected seventeen-year-old Amanda Shoopman to wear the crown for 2017.
Her vocal rendition of the song, “For Good” from the play Wicked stirred everyone and her requirement to have a platform emphasizing community service and education was clearly met.
Her platform, “Live like Bella – Childhood Cancer Foundation”, was inspired when she became involved as a volunteer in 2012, and met the family before their daughter passed. Childhood cancer has a personal dimension for Shoopman because she was diagnosed with eye cancer at only nine months old. She went through one year of chemotherapy and three years of laser eye treatment, which left her blind in her right eye. During the time she spent working with young Bella and her family, they forged a bond which
Shoopman plans to extend her volunteering for as long as she can and in fact was named the 2015 Volunteer of the Year. The freshman at Miami-Dade College manages to juggle even more volunteer work as she can be seen at Biscayne National Park as well as the Everglades National Park, especially in the Every Kid in a Park Program (EKIP).
Homestead Mayor Jeff Porter and reigning Miss Florida 2016 Courtney Sexton were part of the ceremony and Executive Director and President of the Miss Florida Scholarship Foundation, Ms. Mary Sullivan, was among the attendees.
Shoopman’s ambitions are to major in communications with a minor in recreation, and she’s prepared to juggle her classes, plus volunteer work, plus community appearances, and helping with fund raisers for the Miss Homestead Scholarship Foundation. The next few months will be extra busy as she readies herself for the Miss Florida competition in Lakeland in June.