JACKSON, Tenn. — The big night has arrived…

“Go Christine. Let’s win this thing,” said Steven Williamson.

Pageant attendees line the street at the Carl Perkins Civic Center for the final competition of the Miss Tennessee 2017 Scholarship Pageant.

“This is my first time here, and I just wanted to see what all goes on at the Miss Tennessee Pageant, and I’m just happy to be here,” said Demayah Killebrew.

The pageant has been a rich tradition in the Hub City for over 60 years, drawing crowds of people from all across the state.

“I always love coming to Miss Tennessee. Just to see all the hometown feel Jackson has to offer, and all of the gorgeous girls that are competing for this title,” said Emma Fletcher.

The competition is about more than just looks however, and over 92,000 dollars in scholarship money will be awarded to the winners.

“You know these aren’t beauty pageants anymore. These are scholarship pageants that help these girls go through college, and it really actually changes their lives completely,” said Donna Parks.

Each pageant attendee, there for their own reason.

“Oh I love the talent section,” Parks said, “I think that’s why I like the Miss America system so much.”

“What are you looking forward to most about tonight?” “Her winning,” Williamson said.

Saturday night, Miss Tennessee 2016 Grace Burgess will be passing her crown over to one of the 15 final contestants, but the big question on everyone’s mind…who will it be?

Weather Update 10:53 PM CDT:

It was a pretty nice day out there today. We made it to 83 degrees for the high temperature.  A similar day on the way for Sunday. There will be plenty of sunshine  and not very humid conditions. Enjoy it, it won’t last long around here this time of year.

The weather will be on the quiet side through at least mid week, though we have our eye on a disturbance which will be passing nearby on late Monday/early Tuesday. For now, it looks like this will be showers at best and mainly north of I-40. As for the rest of the week. We’ll warm things up on the back half of the week as we return to the upper 80s and 90s. It will also be very humid.

VIPIR 7 Storm Team Meteorologist
Facebook: Moe Shamell
witter: @WBBJ7Moe
Email: mshamell@wbbjtv.com

JACKSON, Tenn. – People gathered at the Shiloh golf course Saturday morning to test more than their swing.

The Teen Challenge Center hosted it’s 2nd annual golf tournament with all money benefiting the center.

The main focus of the center is to help men of all ages fight back against drugs, alcohol, and other life problems.

Center board member Pennie Hemby says she has seen the center change lives.

“It is a great program there is so many that goes in and they have their lives change,” said Hemby.

Director of the Center Jim Forakis has seen first hand the difference the 12 month program makes.

“We are a ministry,” said Forakis. “We help people that have life problems and its just amazing to see how they change.”

Leaders say there are now more than 250 Teen Challenge centers across the country.

JACKSON, Tenn. — Dawel Lugo’s solo homer seals win over Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp. Final score 3-1.

JACKSON, Tenn. – Friends and family came together to celebrate the late Minister Willie Love Jr.  This is the second year Love’s friends and family have gathered at the Regional Inter-Faith Association Soup Kitchen to remember him.  The room was filled with people, balloons, food and singing.

Love was known as a very giving man, even giving the socks off of his very own feet.  His wife of 43 years says it was never about the money for her late husband but just loving people.

“He was a very upbeat man, he loved God, he loved his family, he loved people,” Love said about her husband. “He loved the ministry of reaching out to people in the community.”

The family donated $200 to RIFA today in honor of Mr. Love.

His daughter, Tiffany Newbill, said she promised her father she would keep his legacy alive.  She plans on have these celebrations for years to come.

JACKSON, Tenn. – The tenth annual Shred Event took place this morning at the Jackson Fair Grounds.

“It has been fantastic,” Cynthia Wiel, Director of Consumer Affairs at the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance, said. “Representative Eldridge got here an hour before the event started. We had our biggest rush right as the event began.”

The event was for anyone to bring any document, that had important information on it, to be shredded. They could also bring expired medication so that law enforcement could dispose of it properly. The event wasn’t just to protect people,though, it was also for the environment.

“The beautiful thing is it keeps it from going into our landfills,” Representative Jimmy Eldridge said. “All the paper that is shredded here today will be recycled.”

Most people think that flushing their medicine down the drain, once it’s expired, is the best way to get rid of it.  This may be doing more harm than good.

“People tend to flush the stuff down the toilet and it pollutes our waters,” Wiel said. “Representative Eldridge said you can try to clean that out of the water system but you can never fully get those drugs out of the system.”

This is an event people look forward to each year and Representative Eldridge plans to continue it for years to come.

It’s been very successful through the years.  As A matter of fact, everybody will stop me during the year and ask if I’m gonna partner again and do this.  I say absolutley,” Eldridge said. “We plan on doing it next year.”


JACKSON, Tenn. — As longtime WBBJ 7 Eyewitness News anchor Keli McAlister finished her final days at the station, her co-workers took a moment to share their goodbyes and best wishes with her.

JACKSON, Tenn — Meet six puppies looking for a forever home. They are 10-week-old mix puppies! The mom is only about 40 lbs. Their  names are Thurston, Gilligan, Skipper, Professor (Hinkley), Ginger and Maryann. Watch to learn more about adopting. 

JACKSON, Tenn — The owners of Saucy Jake’s Food Truck stopped by the studio to share grilling tips.

The food truck is located on 586 Vann Drive in Jackson.

Watch to learn more on how you can improve your skills at the grill!

JACKSON, Tenn.-Here are the results from night three’s preliminary round of Miss Tennessee Scholarship Pageant.

Friday evening, the winner in the swimsuit competition was Miss Lexington, Katy Davis and in the talent competition,
Miss Chattanooga, Sarah Harris was the winner.

Stay with WBBJ 7 Eyewitness News into the weekend for continued coverage of this year’s pageant. The final competition begins Saturday  night at 7:45 p.m. at the Carl Perkins Civic Center, where the new Miss Tennessee will be crowned.

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