Damyla Smith, 7, may only stand a bit over 3 feet tall, but the pint-sized diva not only dominated the stage but filled Henry C. Chambers Waterfront Park with her voice Wednesday night.
The second-grader wasn't nervous in front of the crowd of several thousand who cheered her on during the 59th Annual Beaufort Water Festival's Talent Show.
In her mind, Damyla was at home, singing to her biggest fans.
"I go home every day and get on the computer and go on YouTube and practice," said Damyla, who won first place as an individual in Category A.
Cousin Taniqua "Sissy" Mungin, 16, who sings duets with Damyla, ran to hug her after the show. Her young cousin sings all day long, including at church, and has even written and recorded a song she wrote called "I'm Not Afraid," about waking up in the morning and not being scared because God is on her side.
Damyla was one of three performers to sing "Let It Go" from the movie "Frozen," the night's most popular song by number of times sang. Sarah Reynard also belted it, and Ross Putnam thundered out the song on drums.
Performances ranged from singing to dancing to instrumental, in styles from pop to rock to country to religious.
HOPE YOU DIDN'T MISS
Athletics booster clubs and sports teams from Whale Branch Early College High School, Battery Creek High School, Beaufort High School and Lady's Island Middle School have been manning the food booths at the rear of Waterfront Park. The groups earn money for each night they work and collect tips, with the money raised offsetting costs for players. Lady's Island Middle and Robert Smalls Middle have also been out at the T-shirt tent.
BETTER NOT MISS
Lowcountry Supper is one of the most popular nights of the 10-day festival, as ticket holders begin lining up hours before the event. Festival volunteers will cook up 1,200 pounds of shrimp, 2,500 ears of corn and "a whole bunch of sausage" for the dinner, which will be dished out in first-come, first-served fashion.
VOLUNTEER OF THE DAY
At last year's festival, Petty Officer 3rd Class Vanessa Bong, 32, was still settling into town after being transferred to Naval Hospital Beaufort, where she is head of supply for Medical Home Port.
But this year, she's walking the park in a neon yellow "SAFETY" vest, helping keep people safe and orderly during the nighttime events.
"I heard someone talking about it at our command, and I asked how I could get involved," she said.
Wednesday was her third day volunteering, and Bong said it's been relatively straightforward, with most festival-goers behaving and following the rules.
"It's actually not bad; we've been really busy," she said. "I've seen a lot of locals, so that's cool. Rain or shine, they come out, locals and civilians and military."
Bong, who is originally from Washington state, said she has been stationed around the world. While most places have festivals and events, Beaufort stands out in at least one way.
"I have to say, those didn't have nearly this many people," she said.
"Someone is singing 'What does the Fox say' at #BeaufortH2OFest I for one am excited!!" The Real Alex, @aholroyde, on Twitter