Avery Surrency is the First Maid in the 2021 Strawberry Queen's Court.
What made you want to go out for the pageant?
A- For me, I think it was the fact that I grew up around the festival and have been going to the pageant every single year, really every single year since I was 5 years old. And seeing the Queen’s exhibit, the Hall of Fame they have at the festival every year and hoping that I could one day be a part of that. It’s a tradition the festival appreciates so much and I think everyone who goes there feels that. I’ve always wanted to be Strawberry Queen or a member of her court and to be a part of that tradition, so I think that’s what made me decide to go out.
What was your family’s reaction when your name was called?
A- I think my family was just very shocked and very ecstatic when my name was called out. Going into the pageant, I was just wanting to do my best and honestly I never dreamed I would make it this far. It was such an honor. I had a lot of family and friends there. They were so loud and screaming, it’s all I could hear once my name was called.
If you could pick one word to sum up your personality, what would it be?
A- My word would definitely be “positive” because my life motto is basically “If you can’t have a positive outlook, you never know whats going to come out of your day.” I always try to remind myself with a prayer each morning and start the day with that mindset. I believe that as long as I have that good outlook, I can make the most of each day.
What are you most excited for at the festival?
A-What I’m most excited for is being able to highlight things at the festival that people either underestimate or forget that we have. I know one of my favorite things is the Queen’s Hall of Fame and I’ve been showing livestock for years. Everyone knows we have the food and games and everything, but hopefully we can highlight some of the other things so that people can find something new to love at the festival.
We’ve been locked up for a year. What shows/movies/books/video games did you binge to get through it?
A- Bachelor Nation. All of it. I rushed home from an event (Monday) night and dad was FaceTiming me and pointing his phone at the TV so I wouldn’t miss what was happening. Then I got home and we watched it together. I’ve seen really everything related to that. Oh, and I’ve been watching all of the Harry Potter movies.
Do all of you use TikTok? If so what niche side are you on? BookTok? FoodieTok? AltTok/EliteTok? ArtTok?
A- DIY TikTok. I think the videos are so entertaining when they’re like, “Do you have a hole in your shirt? No fear, you can fix it in five minutes with these common household items.” That’s fascinating to me. I watch them all the time.
What’s next for you?
A- Hopefully I will attend USF. And a big thing for me is to continue to cheer in college and then get a degree in journalism and news broadcasting.
Which famous person in history would you want to spend the day with?
A- Mine would have to be Reba. I’m the biggest Reba fan and I’ve been to so many of her concerts. I grew up listening to her music and watching her show. My whole family loves her. We have had so many car karaoke sessions to her albums.
What fictional character do you most relate to?
A- Ron Weasley. He’s really quirky and he has a lot of similar qualities to me. For example, I’m spontaneous at times and will do things because it feels like the right thing to do, but I won’t think about all of the consequences. He and I just share a lot of day-to-day actions.