Payton Barrington of Orlando was crowned the 2022 Miss Florida Citrus on Jan. 22 in Winter Haven. She will travel extensively promoting the Florida citrus industry.
Barrington was chosen during the Miss Florida Citrus and Miss Winter Haven Program held at Polk State College. Jada Carter of Tallahassee was crowned Miss Winter Haven. Barrington and Carter will both compete in the Miss Florida Pageant June 25 in Lakeland. Miss Florida will then compete in the Miss America pageant.
Natalia Panozzo of West Palm Beach, Amanda Kronhaus of Tampa and Ashley Klement of Cooper City were first, second and third runners-up, respectively. The contestants were judged on their personal interview, social impact initiative and response to an on-stage question.
Barrington, the new Miss Florida Citrus, graduated magna cum laude in 2019 from the University of South Florida with a degree in nursing. She works in the intensive care unit at Advent Health East Orlando. Her social impact initiative is Save a H.E.A.R.T., a platform she founded to educate people how to live long, heart-healthy lives. The program focuses on five points through the acronym H.E.A.R.T.: healthy eating, education, activity, reduce stress and take action.
For her talent, Barrington sang the song, “Rise Up,” by Andre Day. Working on the front lines as a nurse at the peak of the coronavirus pandemic, Barrington said she chose the song in hopes that it would be an inspiration to everyone who has been affected by the virus.
From Charlotte, North Carolina, Carter is a 19-year-old student pursuing a degree in computer science at Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University. Her social impact initiative is #GetEngaged – Girls Committing to STEM, to encourage and bring awareness to the vast number of opportunities available to girls in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math.
The Florida Citrus Queen Pageant began in 1924 and has been part of the Miss America Organization off and on for years. The name changed to Miss Florida Citrus in 1984. Over the years, the Florida Citrus Queen and Miss Florida Citrus have traveled the world promoting Florida citrus. Miss Winter Haven was added to the program in 2018.
Barrington’s first appearance will be Jan. 29 at the Treasure Coast Grown Fun Shoot at Vero Beach Clay Shooting Sports. Brenda Eubanks Burnette, executive director of the Miss Florida Citrus and Miss Winter Haven Program, schedules Miss Florida Citrus appearances. Burnette, the 1981 Florida Citrus Queen, can be reached at 561-351-4314 or by email.
Source: Miss Florida Citrus and Miss Winter Haven Program
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