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Sunday, January 21, 2018

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SA's Miss Sweetheart Special Needs Pageant to be held June 17
Special Olympics Texas

June, 2017

Twenty-five female participants of all ages with intellectual disabilities will have their "Miss America" moment at the Miss Sweetheart Special Needs Pageant on Saturday, June 17 at Olympia Hills Golf Events Center from3:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. Admission is free and open to the public. Donations to Special Olympics Texas are appreciated. 


Participants will be competing in several areas of fashion, including Formal, Pretty in Pink and Interview.


Registration to participate in the Miss Sweetheart Special Needs Pageant is still open and can be completed here. Makeup, registration, orientation and rehearsal will be held prior to the pageant, starting at 11:00 a.m. A ramp and assistance will be provided if needed. All participants will receive a crown, banner, t-shirt, goodie bag and surprises.


Malyn Bannister, a graduate of Stephen F. Austin State University, had a vision of creating a special needs pageant when she was 15 years old. Bannister wanted young ladies of all ages with intellectual and physical disabilities to have the opportunity to experience beauty pageants in the same way that she did.


At age 17, her dream came to life and the first Miss Sweetheart Special Needs Pageant was held in 2010.  The response was overwhelming, as it gives these the ladies an opportunity to gain life skills, communications skills, self-confidence and much more. 




Bannister’s older brother, Colby, has Down syndrome and is a SOTX athlete, so she has strived to increase public awareness for individuals with intellectual disabilities for most of her life.  She has competed in numerous local, state and national pageants and is a true inspiration and role model to all who meet her.


For more information on the event, click here or contact Rhonda Bannister ( at 817.233.0984.



FEATURE: Miss Sweetheart Special Needs Pageant shines a positive light on contestants – via The Dallas Morning News Special Needs Blog



About Special Olympics Texas
Special Olympics Texas (SOTX) is a privately funded non-profit organization that changes lives through the power of sport by encouraging and empowering people with intellectual disabilities, promoting acceptance for all, and fostering communities of understanding and respect.  SOTX provides continuing opportunities for more than 58,300 children and adults with intellectual disabilities throughout the Lone Star State to realize their potential, develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage and experience joy and friendship.  To learn more, visit or call 800.876.5646.  Engage with us on: Twitter Visit the SOTX- South Texas Area Facebook page at


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