How can you make the world around you a better place? How can you contribute to your community? How can you better yourself and the people around you? People do this in many different ways, but Emma Widick does this very uniquely. Emma is one of very few female teens in her community who competes in pageants. Emma has won 3 pageants in her short and fairly new pageant career, and has already made a major impact in her community. She has done this by representing a platform of veterans and doing multiple service projects throughout her community to support them.
Emma started her pageant career later than most, as she did not start until the age of 14. She started off by winning Jr. Miss Rock Island County Fair in 2017. “I honestly competed in this pageant as a joke. I never actually thought I would win,” said Emma. The moment Emma had won her pageant, she was shocked. She was never a pageant girl, but just the title fell into her lap.
After that, Emma found a new passion and love for pageants, and decided to compete for Miss Black Hawk Valley’s Outstanding Teen. Emma, once again, had won and would now have the opportunity to compete at state. “I was very nervous, and it seemed like a big task, but, I was ready to take it on and perform to the best of my ability,” Emma said. There were 21 girls competing at state, and although she did not win, this experience helped her tremendously in her pageant career.
Going to state would better her in many ways, and set her up to win her most recent pageant, Miss Mississippi Crown. “I’m excited to be their first title holder in 5 years, and be backed by a team that includes women who have competed at Miss America, and will prepare me for the best,” said Emma. This is a great opportunity for her, as she has a great team and a great sister queen behind her to prepare her to once again compete at state.
After winning Miss Mississippi Crown, the next step is to prepare for state. Emma will do this by bettering her talent of singing and representing her platform of giving support to veterans in the community, and trying to break the stigma against mental health plaguing veterans. “I have a very personal connection to veterans. My grandfather was Vietnam War vet so, I grew up around things like honor flights and honoring those who have served. This very quickly became something I wanted to advocate for,” said Emma. Emma spends a lot of her time going around her community and supporting veterans. She’s currently collecting hygiene products to turn into care packages for vets and their families, served homeless veterans food, assisted in the stand down for homeless veterans, attended Quad City Honor Flight orientations, and attended Quad City Honor Flights sending veterans to and from Washington DC.
In addition to Emma simply winning multiple crowns and helping veterans in her community, knowing the real Emma goes deeper than that. “I love how genuine Emma is. It is really easy in the world of pageantry to lose a sense of self, but Emma is always honest to who she is,” said Emma’s new pageants director, Stacy Paper. Emma has had an impact on many people around her, just by simply being who she is. She is a kindhearted individual, who puts others before herself. “The judging panel for Miss Mississippi Crown was so impressed by her honesty and kind heart during her interview. I have also fell in love with her tenacity,” said Stacy.
Another trait that also makes Emma who she is, is how authentic she is. She stays true to who she is and does not let competitors, students, judges, coaches, or anyone else dictate who she is. No matter the circumstances, she continues to be Emma Widick, no matter if she is competing, at school, at a friend’s house, at home, or serving the community. Something that helps her in this regard, as Stacy said is, “She’s willing to try something outside of the box and doesn’t feel pressured to tackle things the way her peers might. She’s an individual, and has faith in herself.”
The world of Emma isn’t much different than most. Emma simply just makes the best of her life in the ways she knows how to, and this is through pageants and serving her community. The director and all of the organization that she represents is very excited to have her on board, and her former organizations were proud to have her. Next, for Emma, is to continue to grow and prepare for her second opportunity to compete at state.