On Friday, June 28 Laila Haley, 10, of Viola was named Miss Illinois' Outstanding Pre-Teen at a competition in Marion. She is the daughter of Eric and Andrea Haley.
Haley competed along with 22 other contestants, aged 10-12 for the title.
Haley is only the fifth girl to be awarded the title.
"Marion is a long way away. It took six hours to drive there. It was a wonderful place. I loved it," said Haley. Haley spent the week in Marion competing. "We spent the entire week practicing dancing, taking naps and making new friends. We interviewed on Wednesday.
Haley was judged on a six minute interview, talent (She performed thee Latin piece Panis Angelicus). lifestyle and fitness, evening gown and onstage question.
She earned the Payton Tucker Art Education Scholarship and the Grace Khachaturian Heart of Service Award - for living her community service platform every day.
Haley's platform is "Show Us Your Heart - An Attitude for Living."
She speaks about her platform and the power of kindness at organizations, schools and club meetings.
On Sunday, two days after the pageant Haley sang the National Anthem at a Quad City River Bandits game in the Quad Cities. She also appeared in the Quad Cities Fourth of July and at the Mercer County Fair's Queen Pageant. She will also participate in the talent show at the Mercer County Fair.
Haley's first pageant was in 2010 when she was named the 2010 Little Miss at the Mercer County Fair.