So, let's see what happens when Kaitlyn Sparks visits Section 36!
How did you celebrate winning the Miss Metrolina crown?
I celebrated winning how most of the Miss North Carolina girls celebrate after a long night of competing; I went to the nearest Waffle House and ordered the All-Star Special. (For my friends that don't have a Waffle House: It is not what anyone would call a fancy restaurant. It is a dive waffle shop that is open 24/7 and is incredibly casual.) It is definitely not the celebration that you would expect, but those comfort carbs really hit the spot after a long day of nerves and being on your feet all-day.
What did you learn about yourself at the Miss Metrolina competition that will help you when you compete for Miss North Carolina?
I learned how incredibly capable I am of being able to do the job of Miss North Carolina. I realized during my preparation for the Miss Metrolina Competition that I have what it takes to truly do the job well. I am mature enough to understand what strengths and weaknesses exist in the organization, and more importantly how I can fill the voids that the organization has. This is my last year of eligibility within the organization so, if I am ever going to win, my time is now.
Is there a specific goal you’d like to accomplish during your time as Miss Metrolina?
There are so many things that I would like to accomplish as Miss Metrolina, but I definitely have my eyes set on the goal of winning Miss North Carolina. What is it they say, "Shoot for the moon, and if you miss you will still land among the stars?" I want to continue my advocacy for environmental education and continue working with some of the nonprofit organizations that I have been honored to work with, but I would be lying if I said that the goal was not to win Miss NC.
How did you select your social impact initiative?
I actually changed my social impact initiative a couple of months into my reign as Miss Metrolina. I was originally focusing on advocating for everyday acts of kindness, but I have always had a passion for environmentalism. That being said, when I went on a mission trip to Panama in February of last year, I was walking through the jungle in a remote village to get to the beach when I passed mountains of trash that were taller than I was (I am 5'6 for reference). When I asked the locals what these trash mountains were doing in the middle of the jungle they told me that the locals pull trash out of the oceans and put it here in the jungle area so they don't harm the turtles. As I went back home, all that I could think about is how I never put much thought into where my waste goes after I threw it away. I kept thinking about the number of trash mountains that I must have created over my lifetime and I resolved to do my part to ensure that more people begin asking themselves more questions like these.
As a talented singer, what is your favorite part about performing on stage?
My favorite part would have to be the ability to convey feelings with my music. Yes, being technically skilled is impressive but, I love being able to entertain random strangers, put on a show, and know that I have made people smile. Walking off the stage after absolutely nailing your talent is a feeling that I cannot even put into words; it is simply such a rush.
If you could be a Disney character for a week, who would you choose? Why?
I genuinely feel like Disney based the character of Merida off of me, so I suppose I would want to continue being Merida from Brave. I am very much the kind of person that believes that I can do anything and I am at least going to try once to see if I can. I also have naturally curly red hair so, it is a pretty good fit for me already.
How would you complete the sentence, “I get great satisfaction when …”?
I get great satisfaction when I am at home with my dad watching some form of sporting event. We can not like either team or we can not be the most familiar with the sport (ie cornhole or axe throwing), but nothing replacing that feeling of when something goes really, really great or that feeling when something goes really, really wrong. Sports are such a huge part of my life and always have been, but I never knew how much I needed them until we went in quarantine and there weren't any games on. My dad is a high school football coach, my brother played baseball for decades, and I was a multi-sport athlete growing up and sports are my comfortable place where I am allowed to cheer, scream, laugh, cry, throw popcorn, and have all of those reactions be completely normal.
If you had an extra ticket to a Greenville Drive game, who would you take with you? Why?
I would definitely take my dad. While he is not the biggest fan of the Red Sox, he is the person that would make the game the most fun. I would get to go watch some really amazing baseball and I wouldn't have to pay for any of the snacks because my dad would pay for them! It's truly a win-win for me!
Is there a feature or activity in a baseball game that you’d especially like to experience?
I would definitely love to go to the home run derby at least once in my life. My family makes a habit of watching every single year and trying to figure out who is going to win, so I think it would be really amazing to see that in person! That being said, I have never sung the National Anthem at a baseball game or thrown out the first pitch, and those also dream of mine that I would like to see happen before I hang up my crown and sash.
Those all sound like a lot of fun. The home run derby is a wonderfully unique experience!
As always, I want to thank Kaitlyn for visiting with us, and for sending along the amazing pictures to go with the interview.
As Kaitlyn continues her time as Miss Metrolina, I encourage you to follow her on Instagram. It's a great way to keep track of everything she has going on!
I also definitely want to wish her the best of luck when she competes for the Miss North Carolina title. It would be wonderful to have the first Section 36 visitor wear that crown!
Thanks again Kaitlyn, and good luck!