Jesse James Festival judges again encourage the area’s cutest youngsters to wear their best western attire or cutest dress-up clothes and participate in the Little Mr. and Miss contest.

This year’s contest is Saturday, Sept. 21. All contestants are required to be ready to line up by 8:15 a.m. with judging beginning at 8:30 a.m. in the Kearney Feed & Supply store parking lot, 300 W. Washington St. in downtown Kearney.

The contest category age ranges have changed for this year, allowing younger children to participate, said vent organizer Ellyce Grassley. Mini Mr. and Miss are for entrants ages 1 and 2. The Little Mr. and Miss categories are entrants ages 3 and 4. The Junior Mr. and Miss contest is for children ages 5 to 7. Children older than 7 are no longer accepted.

All entrants are asked questions and to complete a short stage walk.

In previous interviews with the Courier-Tribune, Grassley said the contest is informal.

“We really like it be pretty laid back,” she said.

While all entrants get something for competing, first- and second-place winners for each gender in each category receive an award.

All entrants are encouraged to ride on the parade trailer after the contest. Everyone should be ready to ride in the parade by 9:45 a.m. Any winners who ride in the parade must have an adult accompany them at all times.

Walk-ins will not be accepted. Entrants must be registered by filling out an entry form and submitting it to Grassley.

Entry forms are available at by clicking on the Little Miss Mr. drop-down under the Events tab.

The registration deadline is Saturday, Sept. 14.

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