Do Savannnah

More competitors vie for Mr. Savannah title in second annual pageant

  • Mr. Savannah 2016 Peterson “Petee” Worrell (Photo by Adriana Iris Boatwright)

More competitors vie for Mr. Savannah title in second annual pageant

20 Jun 2017

Pageants constitute a big part of the American culture. For decades, we have watched mostly women parade in gowns and bathing suits in the hopes to be a queen of some sorts.

What started as a fundraising effort for the Savannah Sweet Tease, in its second year, the Mr. Savannah Pageant has grown into an institution and taken on a life of its own. Again this summer, several local dudes have signed up with the hope to be crowned Mr. Savannah.

“The pageant is comprised of three categories: Outfit of choice, bathing suits (which was an educational experience during last year’s competition),” says Wendy Denney, co-founder and choreographer for the Savannah Sweet Tease. “We were happily surprised as to what some consider a bathing suit. From merman pants to board shorts, we saw it all. And of course, the talent portion of the competition.”

Last year’s title went to Peterson Worrell aka Petee. Worrell is a pharmacist by day and a musician and photographer by night. While taking photos at Forsyth Park for this article, we were quickly inundated with watchers.

A young girl about the age of 5 approached Worrell to ask him where his castle was. That’s the moment I knew why he was crowned. He leaned over to her at eye level and explained that he did have a castle but not in Savannah. She then said she never met a king, and Worrell bowed as the girl left, seeming quite satisfied with her encounter.

“Peterson is one of the nicest and most talented members of the community and a team player,” Denney says. “It was no surprise when he took the crown. He won the heart of the judges and the audiences that evening. Backstage he was supportive of his fellow contestants while maintaining himself calm and full of charm and charisma on stage.”

This year the contest saw a growth spurt. There are more participants and a bigger interest from audiences who watched Worrell take the title.

“We had eight contestants last year — we are at 12 for this year. This year I feel the contestants are well rounded. What they are bringing to the table and the talent portion of it is quite diverse,” Denney says. “We have two acts that are debuting their drag act and that should be interesting.”

The guys who take part in the pageant do it for many reasons, according to Denney.

“Some have a bucket list and a pageant its part of their bucket list. Some are born entertainers and never had the chance to perform. Some are very confident and have no issues strutting their stuff and some are trying to get out of their shells,” she says.

“There is something very liberating when you are in a vulnerable position. There is something very empowering when you get on a stage and leave it there and for all to see. I feel as if Savannah breathes cool people, you know, and for someone to be named Mr. Savannah — I can’t think of a cooler title to hold and have.”


What: Second annual Mr. Savannah Pageant

When: 9 p.m. June 24

Where: The Jinx, 127 W. Congress St.

Cost: $10; 21 and older