Analouisa Valencia: First openly gay Miss SC contestant - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

First openly lesbian Miss South Carolina contestant: "This is me."

Posted: Updated:
COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) -

Gowns and crowns will be gracing the Miss South Carolina Pageant next week, but all the pomp and circumstance is taking a back seat to one contestant in particular who is making national headlines.

For the first time in history, the pageant has an openly gay contestant. She's also multi-racial, and many are calling her the new face of the south.

Her name is Analouisa Valencia.

"Why should she not win," asked Analouisa's mom, Hattie Palasox. "She's got everything."

It's take two for beauty queen Valencia, who will compete against 48 other contestants next week to win the title of Miss South Carolina.

"Last year, I did compete at state, but I wasn't as comfortable because of the fact I was hiding who I was," said Valencia. "This is my first year coming out and saying, 'This is me, girls. Sorry, I'm going to be changing in the same dressing room as you. This is what's going to happen.'"

Valencia's appearance in the pageant is not just history-making in South Carolina.

"I'm the first openly lesbian contestant in the Miss America system, the first bilingual contestant we've had, so that's good," said Valencia.

With three titles already under her belt, Valencia's family says her success helps represent the changing face of the south. But it's a change that has been met with criticism.

"She's a product of that change and it's taking time for people to accept it," said Palasox.

"A lot of the older generation, they don't accept it," said Valencia's friend, Treston Boyd.

Valencia says its her passion for coaching Special Olympic athletes that she wants judges to remember rather than what she identifies herself as personally.

"If I bring back that crown to Spartanburg, that would be great, but if not, I did what the Lord had planned for me," said Valencia.

With the winner of the pageant receiving a $25,000 scholarship, there's plenty at stake for Valencia.

But she plans on taking it all in stride regardless of what happens.

Copyright 2013 WIS. All rights reserved.

  • Local NewsLOCAL NEWSMore>>

  • 2 agencies partner for Backpack Buddies

    2 agencies partner for Backpack Buddies

    Friday, April 18 2014 10:41 PM EDT2014-04-19 02:41:34 GMT
    MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – The Myrtle Beach Pelicans are working with HTC for a second season to bring Backpack Buddies Monday to TicketReturn.com Field at Pelicans Ballpark. The program invites fans toMore >>
    The Myrtle Beach Pelicans are working with HTC for a second season to bring Backpack Buddies Monday to TicketReturn.com Field at Pelicans Ballpark. The program invites fans to bring certain essentials to the ballpark for donation on Monday home games. Those donating will receive half-price admission on their Monday game ticket.More >>
  • GCSO to collect unwanted prescription drugs

    GCSO to collect unwanted prescription drugs

    Friday, April 18 2014 10:10 PM EDT2014-04-19 02:10:08 GMT
    GEORGETOWN, SC (WMBF) - On Saturday, April 26 the Georgetown County Sheriff's Office and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will give the public its eighth opportunity in three years to preventMore >>
    On Saturday, April 26 the Georgetown County Sheriff's Office and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will give the public its eighth opportunity in three years to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.More >>
  • SCFC shares fire prevention tips

    SCFC shares fire prevention tips

    Friday, April 18 2014 9:26 PM EDT2014-04-19 01:26:42 GMT
    MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - The spring season brought along warmer temperatures with its arrival. To celebrate the season and a tradition for some, people are preparing to spring clean. The South CarolinaMore >>
    The spring season brought along warmer temperatures with its arrival. To celebrate the season and a tradition for some, people are preparing to spring clean. The South Carolina Forestry Commission reminds folks, spring cleaning includes the outside of the home as well.More >>
Powered by WorldNow

918 Frontage Road East
Myrtle Beach, SC 29577
(843) 839-9623
news@wmbfnews.com

FCC Public File
EEO Report
Closed Captioning

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and WMBF. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.