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Joyce Smith was the 2019 Hattitudes winner. Here she displays her winning outfit.

Hattitudes is back after two years

ASHEBORO — Get out your fancy hat and join the parade. Hattitudes is back.

 

After two years of COVID-19 cancellations, the popular hat competition will resume for the eighth time on Saturday, Sept. 10, beginning with a hat parade at 3 p.m. The event will take place at the George Washington Carver Community Enrichment Center, 950 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, Asheboro.

 

Betty Foust, one of the organizers, said the idea came from the play, “Crowns,” the story of a teenage girl from Chicago who goes to live with her grandmother in South Carolina. It’s there she finds connection with African American women in their church hats.

 

Foust said the resulting Hattitudes was considered to be a good way to raise money for worthy projects.

 

Funds raised this year will benefit an after-school program geared to middle schoolers. The aim is to steer students toward what they’re interested in with the goal of using those interests for future careers.

 

“They need a sense of direction before high school, a vision of what they want to do with their life,” Foust said.

 

Hattitudes normally has up to 15 contestants, she said. The judges this year are Chuck Egerton, Judy Saunders and Wanda Gaines. They choose first and second place while the audience gets to pick third place. Awards are $100 for first, $50 for second and $25 for third.

 

Foust said three-time winner Joyce Smith has donated dozens of hats to Hattitudes. Those hats can be demonstrated or sold. Contestants have come from as far away as Greensboro, Burlington and Charlotte.

 

The event kicks off with a hat parade involving everyone wearing a hat. Then the contestants are expected to display their hats “with attitude and personality. The saying is, ‘A hat speaks before she does.’

 

“We want to revive women wearing hats in church,” Foust said. “I will be involved and will probably tell a hat story.

 

“This is just to have fun and raise some money.”

 

To enter Hattitudes or for more information, call Foust at 336-267-5420.