Thursday, May 31, 2012

Miss Hawaii

Aloha!  :)

Time to review Miss Hawaii (did everyone just say it in their head with the Hawiian accent, or was it just us?)!

Hawaii is one of those states that consistently produces genuine, Miss America quality girls... They're super 'warm' and friendly, thanks to all that Island Spirit... They usually have killer bodies, thanks to practically growing up in a bathing suit on the beach and of course, none of us would pass up the chance to spend a few days in paradise watching a new queen be crowned...

Especially when they've gotta follow in the footsteps of Miss Hawaii 2011, Lauren Cheape!

Lauren was the 2nd runner up twice in Hawaii before winning the crown last year... She won a preliminary talent award at Miss America for her Jump Rope routine (having been there - and seeing it first hand, it was waaaaaaaayyyyy more entertaining than i ever expected!).  Within the last couple of months, Lauren also announced that she is running for the State House of Representatives in Hawaii!  Very Cool!

Hawaii History:  Hawaii has 2 Miss Americas... Carolyn Sapp in 1992 and Angela Baraquio in 2001.  Most noteworthy... In the past 13 years, Hawaii has made the semi-finalist cut 6 times --- and in the past 5 years, they've made it 3 times!  Obviously, Hawaii knows how to produce winners!

What You Need to Know:  This year there are 16 girls competing.  Hawaii has A TON of hula dancers (not surprising) and a TON of newcomers (which actually is surprising)!  Means it's anyone's crown to take!

Who to Watch:
Moni Hara:  Hawaii's Outstanding Teen in '07

Corinne Quinajon:  Just a Senior in High School, she's a piano player and a model with real 'presence' about her

Serena Karnagy:  Hawaii Teen USA 07

Carissa Kitaoka:  Vocalist, competed in Hawaii Outstanding Teen

Items to Note:  Miss Hawaii will be webcast this year... so if you can handle the time zone difference, it's worth staying up late to see the production and the crowning! :)

One preliminary night of competition on June 7th - then the finals on June 9th!  Can't wait to see who the winner will be!!!

Junkies LOVE Hawaii!!!  Mahalo!!! :)


Miss Nebraska

Miss Nebraska is a bit of a head-scratcher for us this year... Because Teresa Scanlan won Miss America in 2011 and Brittany Jeffers was a Top 10 finalist the year before her, we expected to see excitement grow in the state, but I'm afraid there are only 13 contestants in this year's pageant.  Makes us wonder if Nebraska girls think they have to 'be Teresa' in order to win... rather than emulate the qualities that make a great Miss America. In any event, we sure like what Nebraska sent to Miss America in 2012!

The Current Queen:  Kayla Batt is all kinds of lovey with oodles of personality!  At Miss America, she received a non-finalist talent award, along with being voted Miss Congeniality by the other contestants.  She was Teresa's second runner up and could've taken the Miss Nebraska crown at that time, but chose to come back and make her own way at Miss America.  We're glad she did!

Nebraska History: More known for their college football than their beauty queens, Nebraska has only produced 1 Miss America; that being Teresa Scanlan, who was crowned at the age of 17 and was the youngest queen in over 70 years.  We had to giggle when we found this photo of Teresa being told to 'take her walk' having just been crowned Miss Nebraska by Brittany Jeffers on Brittany's blog... Classic Moment... :0

Best Junkie Research Tool:  The Miss Nebraska website shows all the contestants here... Headshots, talent and platforms.

Who to Watch:
Mindy Schrieber - 1st runner up in '11, 2nd runner up in '10.  Pretty girl too :)

Rachel Foehlinger - Baton twirler, 3rd runner up in '11, Nebraska's MAOT in '08

Chrissy Townsend - first time in MAO system, but winner of National American Miss Nebraska and has been around the 'pageant scene' for a while

Mariah Cook - non-finalist talent and interview winner in '11, strong piano player

As always - we'll do everything we can to keep you updated on the big event!

Just like lady Gaga...Nebraska, Nebraska, the Junkies Love You Too!!! :)


Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Miss Alabama

If there's one phrase that you hear over and over again about Miss Alabama, it's this...

W I D E  O P E N !

Yes - If they let you bet on Miss Alabama girls in Vegas, you'd probably have at least 20-1 odds on nearly everyone! While there are girls returning from last year, including the entire winner's court from last year, the truth is that nobody is the odds-on favorite to win the crown this year.  So basically, this means that you can render this blogpost null and void (HA!)... Yes, I could research each and every girl and still be as surprised as you are come next weekend!  So - given all of the above disclaimers, let us begin...

Current Queen:  Courtney Porter made the Top 13 at Miss America last year and happened to be the roomie of Laura Kaeppeler (their tweets to each other are super cute!  Totally worth following them just to see them chat with each other!).  Courtney is also a sweet girl who lost her mother to liver cancer in April, before the Miss Alabama pageant last year... Our favorite photo of her will always be this one with the fabulous blue suede shoes!!!

Alabama History:  Three ladies from Alabama have won the national title... Yolanda Betbeze in 1951 (she's the one who refused to pose in her swimsuit, causing Catalina to pull their sponsorship and start the Miss USA pageant), Heather Whitestone in 1995 (the first Miss America with a disability) and Deidre Downs in 2005 (the last year in Atlantic City).

Best Junkie Research Tool:  The Miss Alabama site has all the contestants, click and you'll see their age, school, talent, platform and placement in this year's pageant.  Take a look for yourself right here! And frankly - there are several Miss Alabama locals who have great sites too.

Contestants to Watch:
KeLeigh Edwards: 1st runner up in '11
Haley Bagwell: 2nd runner up in '11
Chandler Champion: 3rd runner up in '11
Jordan Dailey:  4th runner up in '11
Brianna Kinsley: competed in the MAOTeen system, could be big surprise this year
Caitlin Brunell: Most intriguing contestant... former MAOT Teen National Winner from Virginia.  Daughter of NFL quarterback Mark Brunell, charming, dancer, and strong platform (started Caitlin's Closet which allows high school girls to attend prom, homecoming, etc through donated dresses).  She should have no trouble standing-out... but whether or not she wins is yet to be seen.

Others Include:
Carly Evans
Haley Ates
Haley Barber
Sydnii Todd
Abigail Hardin
Anna Laura Bryan

Truthfully, with 48 contestants, there are countless others... As i said earlier, W I D E  O P E N.... whoever has the interview of her life will likely ride it all the way to the crown.  This is definitely one of those states where we'll be as surprised as the winner! 

All the Best to the new Miss Alabama!  Junkie Love to each of You!!! :)


Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Miss North Dakota

Must Blog, Must Blog, Must Blog....

It's suddenly become quite apparent that State Pageant season is here... There are 9 pageants in less than 2 weeks AND there are 12 States the weekend after... and 41 in TOTAL by the time June is through.  That means, I'm going to have to post 2 or 3 different states EACH DAY in some cases before Saturday night finals.  No wonder some of you were panicking about my mental well-being!  I'm beginning to wonder myself!

Today's post is all about North Dakota... where 20 girls are competing for the crown this year!  Current titleholder Ariana Walker was a beautiful representative, and achieved the 'Triple Crown' of pageantry - winning North Dakota Teen USA, North Dakota USA and Miss North Dakota MAO.  We found this photo on her blog and loved it... it speaks to the history of Miss America and the reason why we formed Miss America Junkies in the first place!!! :)

 Ok - No more time for sweet talk!  Must get down to business!

Background:  North Dakota is another state that's yet to produce a Miss America, but many of you will remember Roxana Saberi, Miss ND 1997.  While she was impressive at Miss America (Kate Shindle's year) and finished in the Top 10, I'm much more impressed by Roxanna's career since... She's now an American journalist who was arrested in Iran, charged with espionage and sentenced to 8 years in an Iranian prison.  Although released, she wrote a book called "Between Two Worlds" about her time in captivity and is now a human rights advocate.   Take that Donald Trump.

Best Junkie Research Tool:  The Miss North Dakota site has beautiful headshots of all the contestants and a complete list of all the awards given away at Miss North Dakota 2011.  Gives us a snapshot of who's the best in each category as we highlight certain girls this year.

Junkie Fun Fact:  For only 20 contestants, there is a WIDE variety of Talents in this group... We have an opera singer, a clogger, a clarinet player, an acro-dancer, a percussionist, a hula-hooper, and 7 - yes, count 'em - SEVEN pianists!!!  Guess there's no shortage of Piano teachers in North Dakota! :)

Who to Watch:
Rosie Sauvageau:  2nd runner up in 2010, 1st runner up in 2011, Prelim Talent, Prelim Tie-Swimsuit, High Score Instrumental Talent, Tie for her group's interview award all in '11.  Plus, a great head-shot.  We say, it's hers to lose this year.

Alyssa Ralston:  Related to Katie Ralston, Miss ND 2009.  If it's in your blood, it's hard to give up.

Stephanie Erickson: 3rd runner up in '10, 4th runner up in '11 and Miss Photogenic (twice, we think)

Laura Harmon: 2nd runner up in '11

Serena Christianson: Top 10 in 06, 07, 08 and 09... took a few years off and is back.  Could be a surprise/darkhorse in this year's competition.

Preliminary Competition begins June 7th with the queen crowned on June 9th!

All the best Ladies!  The Junkies love North Dakota!!! :)


Friday, May 25, 2012

Next -- The Junkies Review Miss Rhode Island!

Next --- The Junkies review Miss Rhode Island!!!

Robin Bonner - the current Miss Rhode Island, was a newcomer to the state when she won the title in 2011... and we always thought this headshot was one of the best at Miss America last year!

It's a little tough to find out information on the smallest state's contestants... But we've combed the wonders of the internet to find a few choice tid-bits worthy of posting!  They are... in random order...

Background:  A state who has never had a Miss America, Miss Rhode Island seems to have a tendency to find girls who are outstanding in one area of competition (at least as of late).  For example, at Miss America, Allison Rogers (2006) won the Quality of Life Award, Ashley Bickford (2007) won a preliminary swimsuit award, Julianna Strout (2009) was a non-finalist Talent award winner, and Deborah Saint-Vil was a Talent award winner and Top 15 semi-finalist.  If you're a 'stand-out' in a certain area... you've got as good of shot as any at the title.

Best Junkie Research Tool:  Actually, the site has quite a bit of info on the past 2 years, as well as their Outstanding Teen Program.  Facebook does a decent job as well.  Unfortunately, no videos... bummer.

Keep Your Eyes on the Following Contestants:

Alana Lauro:  She was the 1st runner up in 2011 and in the top 5 in 2010 as well.  She's also competed in the Miss USA program in Rhode Island.  Kinda the 'no-brainer-gonna-make-top-5-again' contestant of the group.

Adriana Roberson:  Fourth Runner Up in 2011...

Gabrielle Whitney:  Second Runner Up in 2011...

Angie Angers: Former Rhode Island Outstanding Teen (and did a martial arts routine as a Teen - she's dancing now)

Marissa Louro:  For some reason, we can't take our eyes off her... she's got a great headshot and seems to be very happy to be involved in the 'Princess Program' on the Miss Rhode Island facebook page.

All head-shots can be seen here... Enjoy! :)

No preliminary competition... winner take all come Saturday

Junkies love Rhode Island!!!  All the best Ladies!!! :)



Winner - Kelsey Fournier
1st runner up - Marissa Louro
2nd runner up - Jummy Olagundoye
3rd runner up - Lindsey Fernandes
4th runner up - Alana Lauro

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Miss Pennsylvania 2012

Whooooooooooooo Hoooooooooooooo!!!!  Welcome to our first blog dedicated to the individual states themselves and our best research regarding the top contenders for the state title!  Very Exciting!  Kinda like your first kiss... or the first time you grabbed your curling iron/hairbrush and used it as a microphone and sang in front of the mirror... or the first time you were intently watching Miss America, carefully choosing your Top 10 based on the parade of states ALONE because Al Gore hadn't bothered to invent the internet yet...

C'mon... i know i'm not the only one out here... That's why we're JUNKIES --- Right???

Back to the topic at hand... Miss Pennsylvania... Let's start with some background first.

Background:  Miss PA has had 5 Miss Americas, but not a single one since 1954.  The most recent PA successes include Nicole Brewer in 2006 and Emily Wills in 2007 who both made the Top 10 in their respective years. 

Current Queen:  Juliann Sheldon (center) was a newcomer to the pageant stage when she was crowned in 2011 and beat 31 other women to claim the title last year.  She's a dancer and was officially one of the 'spunkier' contestants at Miss America in our opinion.  This was one of our favorite photos from Miss America where she, Miss Oklahoma Betty Thompson (left) and Miss West Virginia Spenser Wempe (right) all gazed longingly at the massive dessert served at Bucca Di Beppo during pageant week! 

Best Junkie Research Tool:  We enjoyed this video from the Miss Pennsylvania Organization from their Orientation Weekend.  If you've read anything on this blog, chances are you're familiar with our take on videos... I think we've said it every year for the past 5 years... Videos allow you to see who's well spoken and who's a bimbo.  Excellent Tool. :)

Junkie Research Says:  This is an interesting group of girls... Only 4 girls competed in PA 2 short years ago, but plenty competed last year.  A lovely opportunity for us to 'dive right in' and make some assessments!

Keep Your Eyes On the Following:

Ryann Richardson:  She competed twice in Maryland (1st runner up and 3rd runner up) and three times in PA (1st runner up, Top 10 and 4th runner up last year).  Vocalist with a killer body and prelim swimsuit winner.

Jordyn Coalo:  2nd runner up last year... Tap Dancer... also long and tall...

Annie Rossellini:  Former PA Outstanding Teen at the age of 13!!!  Very strong dancer and won her first pageant at the age of 4.

Mackenzie Bart:  She's flat out gorgeous and this is her second time competing... but other than that, we have no clue.

Kristina Miller:  Looks like her head-shot was done by Matt Boyd (one of the best in the business) and she's got that 'cute factor' that PA has been known to crown in the past.  A Baton Twirler... means if she keeps her 'spunk' and nails her talent, things just might go her way.

Catherine Janisko:  This girl looks like she'll go on and be a VP in a fortune 500 company one day.  Should serve her well in interview... and rumor has it she can sing as well.

You can personally see all head-shots of Miss PA contestants here on their Facebook page.  The girls have already begun rehearsals... Prelims begin on Wednesday night... and we'll do our best to keep you fully updated!  Of course, your comments are always welcome! :)

Junkies love Pennsylvania!  Best of Luck to All!!! :)

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Look Out Pageant Season 2012...

Miss America Junkies is about to raise the stakes...

In fact, I'm about to do what I've never done during a pageant season before...

With great fervor, a lot of laptop time, and a secret stash of chocolate ice cream, I'm about to begin researching the State pageants and making predictions the way Kirk Herbstreit and Lee Corso go after their college football Bowl Game selections on ESPN (well, at least Herbstreit).

Yes - it's my intention to give you the complete low-down on who the front runners are for each state title along with some predictions (big apologies to all my personal friends who graciously put up with this mini-obsession once a year and are now rolling their eyes realizing I'm about to do this 53 more times a year. Yes, I do believe I've officially crossed the line).

Because this is my first year doing so, I'm going to ask for some grace initially... I'm honestly not sure how accurate my predictions are going to be (then again, Corso pretty much goes less than 50/50 most weekends during College Game Day in the Fall). And, because this is an opinion blog, it's entirely possible that I may post something unfavorable about a certain contestant - or at the very least, not even mention a contestant that you think is the foregone winner. For a full disclaimer on this kind of research and my blog... please read this post here...You'll come to see where and why Miss America Junkies began and learn where I'm coming from. :)

Unfortunately, I'm afraid this decision is already one state behind!!!  I owe the Miss New Hampshire contestants an apology!  Megan Lyman, a 2 time first runner up and former Miss NH IMOT was crowned in April and is the first contestant for Miss America 2013 (Pictures here at

While watching the preliminary results for Miss New Hampshire, it dawned on me that I could of/should of put my thoughts on in writing regarding the Miss NH contestants for anyone who wished to keep me honest. After all, the web has given us all priority access to pertinent pageant info... and i for one, am not afraid to use it! So, with apologies to the lovely ladies in Miss New Hampshire (and the 1st through 4th runner ups surrounding the winner in the photo above), please know, I'll catch you next year. :)

For everyone else, it's about to get nuts! Starting with this weekend! That's right - 2 more state queens will be named this weekend... Miss Pennsylvania and Miss Rhode Island. Which means, I need to stock the freezer with my favorite flavors asap if we hope to get this done in time!  Lots of research between now and then... my brain is about to absorb more pageant info in the next 2 months than Lou Holtz has speech teachers (another ESPN reference... sorry). 

Let the Games Begin!!! :)