Miss National Sweetheart 2014

The National Sweetheart pageant, an important part of the Hoopeston Sweetcorn Festival, runs deep with sweet history. Although not affiliated with the Miss America Organization, it runs like an official pageant, and invites the first runner up from each state pageant to compete. New York usually sends a representative, and this year Jamie Lynn, Miss Staten Island, accepted the honor of Miss New York’s Sweetheart.

10422095_479291972174093_5310322852441994078_nThe week began Monday, after packing and repacking a rainbow of dresses and shoes and other important pageant prep tools. She flew out to Hoopeston, Illinois, and joined 42 other beautiful, poised, charismatic state representatives.

The first line of duty: receive official state sweetheart sashes!

Contestants were actually housed with pageant volunteers, instead of a hotel. Various local own members hosted 3-4 contestants each, in their home, and accepted them in like family.

The first day of rehearsals was broken up with a trip to the farm, where contestants were able to drive a tractor and play around in one of the many corn fields. Wednesday, filled with more rehearsals, also gave girls a fun photo booth photo shoot with props and glasses, and then a radio interview. This pageant is a big deal for the local townfolk. Miss Hoopeston, Terra Scharlach, is the official hostess to the contestants all week, as well as a representative of the town. 10635825_480760952027195_2104472622619672673_n

Competition stepped up on Thursday, when each girl participated in her private interview with the judges.

This year, for the first time ever, the preliminaries and final night of competition were live-streamed, for free. This not only gave the parents who were unable to fly out the opportunity to see their daughter compete, but gave friends and families, local directors, and other contestants the opportunity to really see what the National Sweetheart pageant is all about.

The contestants had previously been broken into competition groups, and each group only competed in half of the competition each night. Friday night, Jamie’s group competed in talent, and Saturday swimsuit, evening gown, and onstage question. Laura Lee Lewis, Miss Mississippi’s Sweetheart took home both a swimsuit and talent preliminary award. Rachel Foehlinger, Miss Nebraska’s Sweetheart won the talent award on the first night and Bailey Moses, Miss Arkansas’ Sweetheart, won the swimsuit award on the second night.

10641164_481368438633113_677664270234149167_nOne of the most exciting parts of the pageant, that takes place off stage, is the parade. Although the entire parade highlights the entire festival, the Sweetheart portion is very similar to the Show Us Your Shoes Parade at Miss America. Contestants design a costume and pair of shoes to show off their state pride. Jamie Lynn chose to represent one of the most iconic characteristics of New York City: the taxi

Sunday before finals, the girls were still busy serving the local community. After visiting the Heritage Health Nursing Home, all 43 contestants participated in an autograph signing event.

And then it was time for finals!

never underestimate a statement belt

never underestimate a statement belt

The first set of finals, said to be a Top 15, surprised the audience by announcing instead a Top 16!
Georgia, Taylor Voyles
Arkansas, Bailey Moses
Mississippi, Laura Lee Lewis
New York, Jamie Lynn Macchia
Kentucky, Claire Butler
Oklahoma, Georgia Frazier
California, Ashley Ott
Florida, Chloe Lupo
Idaho, Kalie Wright
New Jersey, Devon Vanderslice
Louisiana, Kelly Bernard
Alabama, Elisabeth Chramer
Washington, Megan Leibold
Texas, Madison Adams
Connecticut, Alexandria Puglisi
Tennessee, Jaclyn Torrento

As the Semifinalists went backstage to prepare for Lifestyle and Fitness, a Non-Finalist Talent Winner was announced: Nebraska, Rachel Foehlinger

 

Top 10:
Kentucky, Claire Butler
Louisiana, Kelly Bernard
Florida, Chloe Lupo
Arkansas, Bailey Moses
Idaho, Kalie Wright
Mississippi, Laura Lee Lewis
Alabama, Elisabeth Chramer
New York, Jamie Lynn Macchia
California, Ashley Ott
Washington, Megan Leibold

The Top Ten ladies competed in both talent, and after an intermission returned for evening gown.

Top 5:
Arkansas, Bailey Moses
New York, Jamie Lynn Macchia
Alabama, Elisabeth Chramer
Mississippi, Laura Lee Lewis
Idaho, Kalie Wright

The final five contestants returned to the stage one last time for the On Stage Question portion. Screen Shot 2014-08-31 at 10.13.16 PM

 

After an abundance of sponsor shoutouts and thank-yous, the final crowning ceremony began!

Miss Alabama Sweetheart, Elisabeth Chramer, won the Producer’s Award; chosen by the producers.

Minnesota, Rachel Latuff and Puerto Rico, Stephanie Ramos both earned the John Bitner Memorial Judges Award. 

Ronnie Reid Platform and Service Award went to Delaware, Brooke Mitchell.

Miss Wisconsin Sweetheart, Chelsey Wasielewski, won the Miss Congeniality award.

Crowning

4th Runner Up: Arkansas, Bailey Moses
3rd Runner Up: Mississippi, Laura Lee Lewis
2nd Runner Up: Alabama, Elisabeth Chramer
1st Runner Up: New York, Jamie Lynn Macchia

10653565_687050388052851_5613102595849784189_nAnd the new Miss National Sweetheart is

Kalie Wright

from Idaho!

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