Pageant will take place during Fort Lauderdale Pride
Jazz Jennings, a prominent South Florida transgender teen and current star of “I Am Jazz” on TLC, is set to crown the first ever Miss Teen Pride USA during Pride Fort Lauderdale's closing party.
The crowning will take place Oct. 11 at 7 p.m. at the Himmarshee Street Festival in downtown Fort Lauderdale.
Jennings, who currently holds the inaugural Teen Pride USA national title, will watch contestants strut their stuff, talents and more on the first day of the pageant taking place Oct. 9 at 6 p.m. at the Sunshine Cathedral, 1480 SW 9th Ave.
"It makes me so happy to see the community coming together and to have fun and to have an event like this," Jennings said. "It is very important to me and I'm glad to be a part of it."
The pageant will consist of several categories that include Presentation/Pride, Interview, Talent, Self-Expression and Q&A.
"I have never done something like this and it is super important for me to support an event like this that helps LGBT teens," Jennings said.
Jennings, who came out as transgender at the age of 6, rose to fame because of her activism for transgender teens like herself.
"I didn't do this for myself,” Jennings said. “I'm doing this for other people."
Jennings and her family founded the TransKids Purple Rainbow Foundation in 2007 to assist transgender youth. The foundation is also a beneficiary of the pageant.
"We want to spread the message out there that you have to live your life authentically and be who you are and embrace your uniqueness," Jennings said.
Jeanette Jennings, Jazz's mother, was first approached by a PFL board member about having Jazz crown the pageant wedding.
"She was flabbergasted," Jeanette said. "Jazz is honored and helping people in any way she can is what she loves."
Jazz will be celebrating her 15th birthday just days before the event.
"Getting to be a part of this pageant is going to be a little happy birthday treat to myself," she said.
According to PFL, the pageant will a part of the closing ceremonies for the Become Pride events that will begin at 6 p.m.
Any teen in the South Florida region, who is interested in participating in the pageant need only to contact Teen Pride USA pageant at 954-764-5150.
"[The contestants] inspire me to continue to move forward and do what I need to make a difference in the world".
This year Pride Fort Lauderdale is a weeklong festival taking place Oct. 5-11. PFL’s signature event, the annual PrideFest, will happen on Oct. 10 and 11 at the War Memorial Auditorium and Holiday Park, 800 NE 8th St.
Visit PrideFortLauderdale.org for more information.