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Cookeville-Putnam County NAACP To Host Juneteenth Scholarship Pageant

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Cookeville-Putnam County NAACP To Host Juneteenth Scholarship Pageant

Cookeville-Putnam County NAACP will host its first-ever Juneteenth Scholarship Pageant on June 11th.

First Vice President Johnnie Wheeler said that they hope to instill values of self-confidence and education in its participants. She said that in the categories for older contestants, they will be required to write and read an essay on a variety of topics, including Juneteenth, bullying, or other topics that promote good citizenship.

“So this pageant is not based on beauty, we just wanted to stress that,” Wheeler said. “Because there is inner beauty that shines through. And we just feel like if we don’t address where we come from, we’re more likely to repeat it.”

Wheeler said that there is also an opportunity to win a scholarship funding up to $600 depending on the age category. She said that the pageant is open to any young lady in the community aged 9 to 21.

Treasurer Dr. Geeta  McMillan said that the holiday has become a topic in a larger conversation surrounding justice and equality after it was signed into federal law last year.

“It marks the day when federal troops arrive in Texas in 1865 basically two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed,” McMillan said. “And what had happened as you can imagine the rural areas had minimal communication. And literally, the federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas that in fact the slaves were freed. So we as freedom fighters and members of the NAACP celebrate that as the actual end of slavery.”

McMillan said that those interested in attending can get more information at


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