Don't get me wrong, I love the Miss America Organization with all of my being and never would want to bash it in any way...but this year's live broadcast was all sorts of wrong in my eyes. This organization has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember and I am still a girl dreaming of holding her state title and competing in Atlantic City in September of 2019. Miss America and Miss North Dakota hold a special place in my heart, and always will. Like everyone else who competed in the LAST year of lifestyle and fitness, I just had a few thoughts on how this year's national pageant went.
1. This JOB is more than an interview
I am all for wanting the ladies to speak their minds, but I didn't want to hear them speak that much during the live broadcast. Where was the long, powerful, elegant evening gown we've always known? That was ALWAYS my favorite part of the show, and yes; I actually miss the lifestyle and fitness competition because it was exciting. You got to see their confidence radiate on the stage and see how proud they were of their hard work.Giphy
2. In all my years of watching, I had never wanted to turn it off before until nowGiphy
It was slow paced, not exciting, and not very entertaining. They took away so many iconic things that make the telecast what it is, that it turned die hard viewers away. I missed the cute postcards of the girls from around AC before commercials, or I don't know...SEEING THE REIGNING MISS AMERICA?! Like COME ON. Why was she watching from the audience? That was beyond messed up among other things during the show. Where was the anticipation of waiting for your title to be called to complete in talent on stage? Where was the anxiousness of waiting to know you've made the top 15, 12, 10, and 7? Why did you take those away? Traditions aren't something anyone should ever mess with and especially not these traditions.
3. "Red Carpet" was a total mess in my opinionGiphy
I am so sorry Gretchen Carlson...but they looked like cattle up on stage while the top ten competed in evening gown. It was a true disaster to me. They had less than ten seconds to walk the carpet, and then they had to talk again. I love woman using their voice, but holy cow, lets tone it down a bit yeah? I don't want to be in the model zone and then have to think of something to talk about at then end. LET. THEM. HAVE. THEIR. MOMENT. IN. THE. SPOTLIGHT. That is one of the many moments that each contestant should feel like she's accepting an Academy Award. That is the moment I dream of for myself to have next year and now knowing that is what I will get, makes me a bit sad to be honest.
4. Bring back CaraGiphy
I'm not just saying this because she is not only My Miss North Dakota sister, but one of my closest friends. She deserved so much better than what she got towards the end. Not everyone agrees with her letter, I understand that; but we should all have human compassion. She shouldn't have had to sit in the audience during the live show, let alone as far back as she did. I have seen that girl work day in and day out to ensure she is doing her job as Miss America to the fullest and let me tell you, you'd be amazed by her too. She has a servants heart and hold compassion for others beyond anyones power or belief. She is a true rockstar and North Dakota is so forever lucky to have her. I have seen the power she holds in for fight for what's right; and she isn't stopping now. Her reign has ended and she is on her way to Notre Dame to attend Law School, and I don't know about you but I would be very proud of her. She used her voice, just as a Miss America should, and she was so visibly punished for doing so. I will forever #standwithcara.
5. Not going to lie, I want swimsuit backGiphy
It brought a certain spark to the show and competition that can't be replaced by more interviews. Maybe adding the interview portion would have been more accepted had they not ripped out swimsuit. I was 100% onboard when we canned the lifestyle and fitness portion, but now I realize what a sad day that truly was. Miss America began as a swimsuit contest and for 97 years; it's been tradition. Yes, it can be seen as sexist, but have you seen the confidence those woman hold when they're strutting their stuff on stage? I am so proud to have been a Miss America 1.0 CONTESTANT because I was able to show off my hard work this past summer. I work so hard to lose 30+ pounds for Miss North Dakota and I didn't just do that for swimsuit, I did it so I felt more confident. Miss America helped me find my inner strength and work on a healthier lifestyle for my everyday life. I owe a lot to the MAO and my inner strength is one of them.
6. Where the heck was Gretchen during the week before and prelims?
I'll admit it, I completely stalked their instagram accounts and social medias to see what was going on in Atlantic City, NJ. It was nice to have a few friends their competing as well, but over all they looked like they were having the time of their lives. But my main question is...WHERE WAS GRETCHEN CARLSON? If you're in charge, why did you not attend all the events? Were you scared of what the media may see? We already saw you were not supportive at the introduction ceremony on the boardwalk. I just wish she would understand what this organization means to so many of us and why we are fighting so hard for it's traditions. Wake up and smell the horrible white roses you presented Nia with when she was crowned; the sisterhood will prevail and we will come out on top. Take notice, here she is not paying attention to any of the contestants while Cara is so happy to put them all on her PERSONAL instagram story.
7. Who hired the new hosts and where is Chris HarrisonGiphy
He was and still is the BEST host the MAO has ever had. He was a friend to the girls, treated them with respect and was just one charming fella. I loved every show he hosted and with Sage Steele...DYNAMIC DUO! They lit up the stage and gave us their own show to watch! So much love for this man.
8. Miss Michigan; Emily Sioma
This title holder is pure GOALS. She took her moment and ran with it and I admire her for that. Her preliminary competition was amazing and her evening gown was STUNNING. I love everything she is and stands for. As a title holder within the MAO, I want to be just like her. Take your moment, let what you want to say shine bright because guess what, it's LIVE television...try and stop us now Gretchen.
9. I want to start a petition to being the runway backGiphy
The most traditional things about being crowned Miss America; taking the stage down the runway and hearing "there she is." Sadly, neither of those were a thing this year with "Miss America 2.0" and it was so heart breaking. I have dreamed of that moment my entire life, even if it's not me being crowned, but one of my Miss America sisters. I cried when I saw the stage construction because there was no runway and they looked so lost after crowning Nia Franklin because she didn't have her moment to strut her new stuff on the Miss America stage.
10. After everything I saw during the live show, the sisterhood is real and I will continue competingGiphy
I believe so much in the power of this sisterhood and what it can do. We can get Miss America back to her glory days and we will do it together. I will continue to fight and work towards my dream job as Miss North Dakota.
11. Here is a bonus because Savvy Shields Wolfe is the CUTEST human everGiphy
All in all, Miss America is more than a crown and sash at the end of the day. It's about Children's Miracle Network, scholarship, success, style, and best of all service. I am a proud MAO girl and will continue to support my sisters through every path life allows us to take. I am a firm believer in change, but only when it has a positive impact and to me, I don't believe these changes do. Thanks for allowing me to share my thoughts on Miss America 2.0 with you all!