Cagle Shines at State Pageant
Karen Cagle of Rector is a woman of many talents and achievements, known by many in the area for her participation in and contributions to the performing arts, as well as an outstanding career as a teacher and counselor at first Greenway, then Clay County Central and now Rector High School. The mother of six and grandmother of five further added to her list of accomplishments on June 21, when she was crowned Ms. Senior Arkansas at the Alma Performing Arts Center in Alma, Ark.
Competing in the event is something Cagle, 60, had been looking forward to for several years.
"I loved it," she said. "Ever since I found out there was one of these pageants, I couldn't wait until I turned 60 and was able to be in it."
Ms. Senior Arkansas contestants are scored in four weighted categories: interview and talent, which are each worth 30 percent of the total score, and evening gown and philosophy of life, which are worth 20 percent each. Prior to being announced as the winner in a field of 12 contestants, Cagle was announced as the winner in the evening gown and talent portions of the contest. She performed a tap dance solo to "Get Happy," delighting the crowd and judges with her skill as a dancer.
"I started tapping at age 50," Cagle said. "I worked with a group for five years and then quit. I had never danced a tap solo in my life until I got on stage for the Ms. Senior Arkansas Pageant. It was a lot of fun."
When her name was announced as the winner, Cagle was overcome with joy.
"I was just thrilled," she said. "It means so much to me, because all of the ladies there were just wonderful. I enjoyed meeting them and having the opportunity to compete in a pageant like this. Everyone there was so supportive. They were all genuinely nice and caring people."
As Ms. Senior Arkansas, Cagle will now have the opportunity to compete for the title of Ms. Senior America Oct. 26 through Oct. 30 in Atlantic City. This marks the 26th year of the pageant, which was created as a way to highlight and honor senior women as role models and present their stories of achievement, overcoming adversity and hope.
Cagle says she is as active as a senior as she has been at any other time in her life. She enjoys numerous outdoor activities, spending time with her family, supporting the local arts, traveling and other fun adventures she is able to fit into her busy schedule.
"I enjoy my active life," she said. "There are so many fun and interesting things to do and be a part of in life."