If anyone could look beautiful with their mouth gaping open, it's Mallory Hagan! :) Seriously - Mallory's moment of 'shock and awe' is everything we want in a newly crowned Miss America. In addition, one of our favorite moments in the press conference immediately following her crowning was when a reporter asked, "At what point did you think, 'I might actually win this'?"... Her reply? "There was no moment!" Hence, the vast amount of shock you see above! :)
And even though the Junkies didn't pick her as the winner, we were just as excited to see that Miss America has crowned yet another beautiful, articulate, genuine, 'fun' girl to represent the organization in 2013. In fact, the Junkies were able to talk directly to many of the contestants immediately after the event was over and here are just some of the phrases we received from Mallory's fellow Miss America competitors...
"I'm so glad Mallory won... She's going to be amazing!"
"Mallory is a really cool girl... I would absolutely describe her as a 'cool girl' and
I couldn't be happier that she won"
"I'm really excited that Mallory is Miss America - she's funny, she's 'real' and I know
she'll do a great job"
Mind you, these are unsolicited comments from her fellow contestants... meaning, I didn't say, "So, what do you think of Mallory?" or "How do you feel about Mallory winning?"... Nope! I was trying to compliment the girls on their own personal performance and they all turned the conversation to how happy they were that Mallory won. THAT, in addition to the photo where all the girls behind Mallory look thrilled and excited for her, says A LOT in my book and speaks volumes to Junkies like me. :)
And now... it's time for a few additional thoughts from my crazy Miss-America obsessed mind... listed here... in no particular order... :)
1. This year, the Junkies went 12/16, then 5/8, and then 3/5. Considering we didn't attend rehearsals and only 2 out of 3 prelim nights, I think I'll take it (and we've certainly done worse!)
2. We haven't yet seen the actual televised version of Miss America yet - but from what we can tell, the show earned amazing ratings AGAIN - even being up against 2 NFL Play-off games. Credit that to ABC and the vast amount of promotion they did leading up to the big show (on GMA, Live Well Network and the 20/20 Special)... I really think it made a big difference.
3. Regarding some of the girls we 'missed', I'll give you my personal theory on why we chose, who we chose. After looking at the prelim winners, I noticed a 'trend' if you will , that the judges seemed to be rewarding a specific 'type' of girl... mainly... girls who were dainty and 'small-framed' (even petite in some cases) rather than long lean bodies. Congrats to Tall-Girls Tennessee and Kentucky for breaking through that stereotype and pulling in strong finishes.
4. While some of the talent from the final night was left to be desired, it proves that you have to be strong and consistent in every area in order to win Miss America. You don't have to be THE BEST at every category (in fact, Mallory is the first since Miss America 2005 Deidre Downs NOT to have won a preliminary award prior to winning Miss America)... but you do have to be very strong in every area. If not, you won't advance to the final round.
5. While I was impressed with several of the 'final on-stage question' answers given, I believe Miss New York did give the best answer to the question that was asked (because she 'answered the question'). There are times when you 'spin' a question so that you can provide a 'good answer'... and then there are times when you need to simply 'answer the question' that you're given. For future Miss America contestants who read this blog, trust me... Your private interview is the best time to 'control the direction' of what you want to talk about... but the final on-stage question is when you need to simply 'answer the question'.
6. Lots of additional awards were given this year... including the following:
- Quality of Life Winner = Alabama
- Quality of Life 1st Runner Up = Maryland
- Quality of Life 2nd Runner Up = Tennessee
- Quality of Life Finalists = Washington, Delaware, Idaho and Mississippi
- Instrumentalist Award = Idaho
- Four Points Award = Idaho
- Miracle Maker Award = South Carolina
- Miss Congeniality = Arkansas
- Non-Finalist Interview Award = Delaware
- Non-Finalist Talent Awards = North Carolina, North Dakota, Massachusetts, Idaho and Mississippi
Items of interest here...
Idaho goes home with 4 plaques and $7000! Not too shabby! :)
Massachusetts was a gymnastic tumbler at her state pageant... then wins a non-finalist talent award as a vocalist! That's impressive!!! :)
Alabama continues to dominate the Quality of Life award... if you're just a 'crown chaser' in Alabama and haven't truly committed yourself to your platform, become a state hopper and go somewhere else.
7. Wyoming ends a 60 year drought for the state... the last contestant to make the cut was in 1953! The Junkies LOVED Lexie and hopes she decides to Run - Not Walk - to Miss USA! :)
8. We haven't figured out how long it's been since not a single vocalist finished in the Top 5 at Miss America... Frankly - we're not sure it's ever happened!?!
9. If you think 'prep-teams' aren't important, let me let you in on a little secret... A well-spoken, talented, beautiful girl won't get far without a strong prep-team. Allow me to explain using our Top 5 as an example...
New York, Oklahoma and Iowa know what they're doing - just look at their recent track records! Since 2006, these 3 states alone have produced 3 Miss Americas, 7 Top 5 finalists and 4 more semi-finalists. South Carolina's Teen won the Outstanding Teen competition this year (so they have the secret sauce this year)... and Wyoming enlisted the help of the same guy who helped Caressa Cameron when she won Miss America. These things are not coincidences... I see it a little like Assistant Coaches in Football... The head coach usually stays, but if an Assistant Coach is worth his weight - he'll get recruited by a new school. There are a few states who could use a new coach... picking one off from a top state might be a good start. :)
10. If attending Miss America is on your 'Bucket List', please, please, please make a point of telling yourself that next year will be the year you go! Even if you don't have a 'favorite girl' to cheer for, it's absolutely worth it to be a part of the hoopla and fan-fare! Start saving your pennies today - and be prepared to make memories you'll treasure forever! :)
THERE YOU GO! That's a wrap on Miss America 2013! Super-Duper Excited to watch Mallory Hagan throughout her reign - and of course, we'll also continue our blogging this summer when we predict who the potential winners might be for each state vying for the title of Miss America 2014!
Once again, we're so excited to have met so many new "Junkie Friends" via the Facebook page, Twitter feed and in person! We look forward to meeting many more of you in the years to come as well! Until then, please practice your pageant wave... blow kisses into the wind... wipe a tear from your own eye... and everyone sing together... "There She Is... "
JUNKIES UNITE! :)