GROWING up in the country, Conondale resident Jai Smith has always appreciated the community spirit small towns have.
The 18-year-old country girl hopes to transfer her love for meeting new people into the upcoming Woman's Day Miss Country Girl Australia competition, set to hit the Sunshine Coast on Saturday, August 25.
Born in Maleny and growing up in Conondale, Miss Smith's love for all things country, including the community, is an ongoing part of her life.
"My family have always had cattle properties and when I was younger I would spend all my spare time helping them," Miss Smith said.
"Now I really appreciate the community spirit towns have."
Miss Smith first heard about the Country Girl competition on the radio, and thought the experience would be a great opportunity to meet new people and experience the modelling industry.
Though her sights are set high for the upcoming model search, Miss Smith is career driven and wants to be a high achiever in whichever field she works.
"Since I've finished (school), I've worked on a cattle station in the Northern Territory and have spent the last 12 months working on a cattle stud in Kandanga," she said.
"I plan on attending university next year to study financial planning."
Having never done modelling before, Miss Smith is confident going into the upcoming competition, and furthering the experience as a hobby.
"I've never done modelling before, but I've done a couple of Show Balls and Rodeo Princess Contests, and enjoyed them a lot," she said.
"I've got the talking thing down pat.
"It could become a great hobby."
The winner of the upcoming Country Girl heats at Maroochy RSL will compete at the national finals in Sydney, alongside regional girls from across Australia.
They'll be vying for a modelling contract with Scoop or Chic Management model agencies.
With or without a modelling contract, Miss Smith said she would continue to work to bring country communities closer.
"I'm secretary of the Conondale Race Club committee.
"I'd love to be able to help organise events to bring the community together," Miss Smith said.
STRIKE A POSE
To register, fill in an application at misscountrygirlaustralia.com.au/How-To-Enter
Junior competition open to girls aged 8-12 years
Senior competition open to girls aged 13-28 years
Preliminary entry does not need to be in home town