Saturday, August 3rd was the first official preliminary pageant for the Miss New York 2014 and Miss America 2015 pageant.s Twelve beautiful ladies, including myself, found our ways across the middle of the Empire State to vie for the crown.
Not only is it the first preliminary of the year, but it was the inaugural Miss Central New York. The directors, Amy and Corrine, had both competed in the Miss America system before deciding to start their own local. Two years after Amy walked the stage as Miss Finger Lakes, and Corrine as Miss Thousand Islands, the planning and fundraising was finally complete. The first Miss Central New York would be crowned.
The pageant was held in the Storer Auditorium at Onondaga Community College. However, due to construction, there were no proper parking lots. This made things confusing for not only the contestants, but the judges, the volunteers and the attendees. That is just one of those things that can’t be avoided.
Adrienne and I had left early, with plans of arriving early. Siri, however, had far different plans, and sent us to Baldwinsville; 35 minutes north of Syracuse. For all intents and purposes, we arrived to this false location by 9am, so we would have been early of we had the proper address. But instead, we were trapped behind a hoard of Harleys, and ended up arriving stylishly late.
The emcees for the event were Nina Davuluri, Miss New York 2013 and Lonna McCary, Miss Thousand Islands 2012. Jesse Ladoue, a former Miss New York contestant who competed and won Miss New York International was originally going to host with Nina. However, Jesse recently competed at the Miss International pageant, and won! With her new title she was no linger available, but we are all just super happy she brought New York to such a high level.
After a morning of rehearsals, we began to prep for interview. I had planned on wearing a grey dress instead of last year’s black. But I fell back to the black. I knew it looked good.
It wasn’t my best interview. I have been slightly sick, and not only didn’t have my full voice, but I couldn’t breathe and was gasping, and my mind was not clear. It didn’t help that I was not very impressed with the judges. Their questions were off color or inaccurate, they took long pauses between questions, and many of the girls said the judges would “pass” a few times in a row. It was very hard to tell if I did well. I think my content was good. My closing statement wasn’t terrible. I think my delivery is what stole my confidence.
The opening number dance was a sparkly sequin themed routine to the song Fame. Although we were sent the choreography in advanced, or course I was far from confident. The fact that I was directly in front of the judges didn’t help me feel confident.
When it came to introductions, well, I showed a lot of personality there.
Saving the best for last, my name is Katherine Crandall. I graduated from Paul Smith’s College and… I forgot my platform. So I said, Remembering my platform has never been my specialty! I am encouraging first time and developing lifetime blood donors!
Lifestyle & Fitness
Despite not working out in a month, I felt very confident in swimsuit. It is actually strange how much I don’t hesitate to run down a flight of stairs in high heels and a bikini. My tattoo was covered, but didn’t blend well. I am highly considering a one piece, simply because I will never win with a giant bruise on my stomach.
There was not enough filler between the two categories, and limited communication between backstage and the fitting rooms. This being said, we were all still in the fitting room when the filler, Libby (Miss Central New York’s Outstanding Teen), came back. She was already done performing, and none of us were backstage! We ran, but no one had shoes or butt glue. A few girls were skipped over, and had to go back. Thankfully, Nina realized we weren’t all ready, and stalled a bit halfway through so we could throw on our shoes backstage.
This time I chose to perform a mashup of Beyoncé’s Halo and Katrina and the Waves’ Walking on Sunshine, as performed by the cast of Glee. I had been so busy with work that I had not fully choreographed my routine. I had been trying to figure something out for my ending, but up until five minutes before the talent portion I was still without an ending. Thankfully, while in a last minute ditch effort to rehearse backstage, I figured it out. I went out on stage and for the first time since I started performing in ASL, I was really pleased with my performance.
I had found a gown at Macy’s that was unique and beautiful and fun. Although not necessarily a “pageant gown”, it was beautiful and I really like it. Unfortunately, it somehow felt too big on the top when I put it on. I tried putting in fake boobs, but that made it worse. I hope that the insecurity didn’t show on stage.
Being the last contestant, as I approached the magic fish bowl Nina said, “There’s only one question left.” So, being me, I said, “I wonder which one I’ll choose!” The audience laughed as I put my high heeled shoe in my mouth.
My question was on the differences between the Miss America Organization and the Miss USA Organization. I am so dissapoited in my answer.
So many times since competing I have had to defend MAO to people who mistake the two organizations. So out of habit, I began to answer the unspoken question, what do you say to someone who mistakes Miss USA for Miss America. Although close, I felt as though I did not give my answer justice. I could have done so much better.
Before the winner was crowned, there were other awards.
I won the Presale Ticket Award, and received 10% of the total presale ticket sales.
Bianca Lupi won Presale Ad Award, and recieved a portion of those sales. She also won Fan Favorite, a combination of both online votes and show votes. She received 50% of the total money raised. She also won Miss Congeniality!
Courtney Sheridan won Talent Star Award for the highest score in talent.
Fourth Runner Up is Adrienne Wilson.
Third Runner Up is Chelsea Brumagen.
Second Runner Up is Caitlin Nolan.
First Runner Up is Anneliese Trust.
The first Miss Central New York is Courtney Sheridan!