|Photo: Tobie Andrews|
So, let's see what happens when Katelyn Andrist visits Section 36!
How did you celebrate winning the Miss Walnut Valley crown?
After being Crowned Miss Walnut Valley I celebrated my win with my family, friends, candidates, and the little princesses who came to watch. It was very important to not make this about myself, but to make it something special for the little princesses because one day they will be in my shoes.
What did you learn about yourself at the Miss Walnut Valley competition that will help you when you compete for Miss Kansas this summer?
At the Miss Walnut Valley competition I learned I have the voice and the power to command a room. While in the private interview and on stage I had all eyes on me to advocate for all ages about self-confidence. I saw my inner and outer self- confidence grow into something unstoppable. I learned with my skills and talent I need to have more self-compassion for myself. I need to break away from the mindset of being perfect in every single aspect of competition. I am human and make mistakes. Overall, I have learned to be more soft and create self-compassion for myself. When competing for Miss Kansas this June there is a lot of pressure put on myself that I create. Now, this year I can learn to be more soft, gentle, and kind to myself like I do for others. I advocate for self-love and self-confidence which is a journey that I need to understand as well.
Is there a specific goal you’d like to accomplish during your time as Miss Walnut Valley?
During my time as Miss Walnut Valley I want to double my community service projects from last year. I completed 14 different projects all over Kansas. This year I want to do at least 20 different community projects with different groups of local communities. As Miss Walnut Valley I want to make a difference in my community and change people’s lives the best way I can. I want people around me to feel seen, loved and important. I want people to remember me for my servant heart because people remember how you made them feel. Therefore, my goal is to create a legacy and become a role model for my community.
How did you select your social impact initiative?
My social impact initiative is “Inner Self-Love, Self-Beauty Creates Your Journey to Acceptance.” I wanted an initiative that was genuine and powerful. A lot of ages and genders do not like talking about their mental health, body image, and self-confidence. I wanted to be that person to speak out and educate others around me. My journey could be that example for a little girl or boy who is struggling about finding out who they are. I am still growing and changing day by day. Throughout anyone’s life we all have struggled with one or all three of these topics. It is important to connect and create a bond with people through my initiative. I want to change people’s lives and mindset. Creating healthier, positive and stronger communities with mental health, body image, and self confidence.
As a talented dancer, what do you enjoy most about performing on stage?
Performing on the stage allows me to show my heart and passion to the audience. They can see my softer side because I perform lyrical or contemporary. This allows the audience to see my struggle, pain, happiness, and growth throughout my dance. My dance showcases my journey of understanding myself of the aspects of body image, self-confidence, and mental health. Being a dancer of 20 years I have struggles with self-confidence and body image. Throughout my years of dancing I have built up my self-confidence and understanding of my body. Therefore, when performing I always want to showcase my skills of dancing, mindset, and physical aspects.
How would you complete the sentence “I get great satisfaction when ___”?
I get great satisfaction when I know I have made a difference in one person’s life because the smallest act of kindness has the biggest impact on one’s heart.
If you could be a Disney Character for a week, who would you choose? Why?
I would be Cinderella because she is kind, giving, genuine, and overall a selfless person. I think she is a good role model to show everyone kindness and respect even if they don’t deserve it. In my life I want to always show kindness and respect to each individual. Again, people remember how you made them feel and the kind / soft gestures you did.
If you had an extra ticket to a KC Royals game, who would you take with you? Why?
I would take my 97 year old great grandmother Mary. She has been my biggest support system in everything I do. I always want to strive to be the selfless, genuine, kind, outgoing, and powerful woman she is. Everything I do in life and pageants is for her. I love sharing moments and memories with her. She is something so special to me and this world. It is a blessing to be able to still have her in my life.
Is there a feature or activity at a baseball game that you’d especially like to experience?
At a baseball game I would like to experience meeting new people and talking to the crowd, staff, and baseball players. I love hearing everyone's experiences and stories of life. I am humble and grateful people intrust me to hear their moments of struggles and happiness. I have a few activities in mind which would include singing the National Anthem, pitching on the field, and having a table full of education flyers, gifts, and candy to advocate for my social initiative.
That all sounds like a lot of fun!
As always, I want to thank Katelyn for visiting with us, and for sending along the picture to go with the interview.
I also want to wish Katelyn luck when she competes for Miss Kansas! It would be fantastic to have the first Section 36 Forever wear that crown.
Thanks again Katelyn, and good luck!