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Cumming fourth-grader claims Miss Amazing crown

Representing state in national pageant

POSTED: June 29, 2013 12:15 a.m.
For the FCN/

Sarah Costello, a rising fourth-grader at Cumming Elementary, recently won her age division of the Georgia Miss Amazing pageant. Escorted here by friend Dustin Thomas, Costello has advanced to the national competition Aug. 21-24 in Nebraska.

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A Cumming Elementary student recently took top honors in her age division of the Georgia Miss Amazing pageant and will go on to national competition later this summer.

Sarah Costello, 10, placed first in the pre-teen division of the event, which was held May 31 and June 1 at Lassister High School in Marietta.

Miss Amazing isn’t a typical pageant. Held in about 25 states around the country, it’s a pageant for girls and women with disabilities.

Founded in 2007, the program, according to its Web site, seeks to “give girls and women with disabilities the opportunity to build self-confidence in a supportive environment.”

Cindy Costello, Sarah’s mother, said a teacher at Cumming Elementary encouraged her daughter, who has Down syndrome, to enter the pageant.

“One of the teachers was like, ‘Oh you got to have Sarah do this, she’ll win,’” Costello said. “And I was like, ‘Oh please, I’m not a beauty pageant mom.’”

But after some persuasion from school staff and her daughter, Costello agreed to let her enter.

“And the little stinker won the whole thing,” she joked.

During the pageant, the young Costello competed in a runway portion, in which she was escorted by her “boyfriend” Dustin Thomas, who is 12 and also has Down syndrome.

Miss Amazing invites young men with disabilities to serve as escorts for the girls.

“The really cute part was that [Thomas] got to take part too,” Costello said. “He walked with Sarah and a couple of the other girls.”

Costello also took part in the talent portion of the pageant, although that part is not factored into final scores as some of the girls are unable to participate due to their disabilities.

Her mom said she performed a dance routine to the song, “What Makes You Beautiful.”

Of the girls who completed the talent portion, Costello received the highest score.

She also took first place in the runway competition, securing the top position in here age division.

She advances to represent Georgia at the Miss Amazing national pageant Aug. 21-24 in Omaha, Neb.

 

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