A Miss America Primer

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kirsten haglund 247x300On Saturday, January 24th, the 84th annual Miss America pageant will be held in Las Vegas, Nevada at the Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino. It will be broadcast on TLC for those interested.

The pageant is a long-standing competition which awards scholarships to young women from the fifty states plus the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands. All the women complete an interview, plus battle in swimsuit, evening gown, and talent competitions. The overall winner is crowned “Miss America” until the next year. The 2008 Miss America, Kirsten Haglund, is pictured to the right. Who will she cede her crown to?

To give you all a preview of what to expect, here are all 52 candidates, complete with a head shot and a swimsuit photo. You can pick out your favorites, and see if you can predict who will take home the crown:

09 alabama 09 alabama2 211x300

Miss Alabama

Amanda Tapley
Birmingham, Alabama
Age: 20


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Miss Alaska

Stephany Jeffers
Anchorage, Alaska
Age: 23


09 arizona 09 arizona2 209x300

Miss Arizona

Erin Brittany
Sierra Vista, Arizona
Age: 23


09 arkansas 09 arkansas2 211x300

Miss Arkansas

Ashlen Batson
Newark, Arkansas
Age: 21


09 california 09 california2 211x300

Miss California

Jackie Geist
Vacaville, California
Age: 22


09 colorado 09 colorado2 211x300

Miss Colorado

Jamie Dukehart-Conti
Arvada, Colorado
Age: 23


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Miss Connecticut

Ashley Christina Glenn
Hamden, Connecticut
Age: 23


09 delaware 09 delaware2 211x300

Miss Delaware

Galen Giaccone
Wyoming, Delaware
Age: 20


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Miss District of Columbia

Kate Marie Grinold
Washington, District of Columbia
Age: 23


09 florida 09 florida2 211x300

Miss Florida

Sierra Minott
Fort Myers, Florida
Age: 20


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Miss Georgia

Chasity Hardman
Columbus, Georgia
Age: 24


09 hawaii 09 hawaii2 209x300

Miss Hawaii

Nicole Fox
Honolulu, Hawaii
Age: 23


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Miss Idaho

Elise Davis
Idaho Falls, Idaho
Age: 20


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Miss Illinois

Katie Lorenz
Chicago, Illinois
Age: 24


09 indiana 09 indiana2 209x300

Miss Indiana

Katie R. Stam
Seymour, Indiana
Age: 22


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Miss Iowa

Olivia Myers
Sperry, Iowa
Age: 22


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Miss Kansas

Emily Deaver
Augusta, Kansas
Age: 19


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Miss Kentucky

Emily Ann Cox
Campbellsville, Kentucky
Age: 22


09 louisiana 09 louisiana2 210x300

Miss Louisiana

Blair Abene
Hammond, Louisiana
Age: 22


09 maine 09 maine2 211x300

Miss Maine

Adrienne Leigh Watkinson
Topsham, Maine
Age: 23


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Miss Maryland

Louise Schlegel
Silver Spring, Maryland
Age: 20


09 massachusetts 09 massachusetts2 209x300

Miss Massachusetts

Alicia Zitka
West Springfield, Massachusetts
Age: 22


09 michigan 09 michigan2 209x300

Miss Michigan

Ashlee Baracy
Westland, Michigan
Age: 23


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Miss Minnesota

Angela McDermott
Austin, Minnesota
Age: 24


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Miss Mississippi

Christine Kozlowski
D’lberville, Mississippi
Age: 19


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Miss Missouri

Lacey Fitzgerald
Richmond, Missouri
Age: 24


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Miss Montana

Jennifer Lynn Hepner
Great Falls, Montana
Age: 23


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Miss Nebraska

Gretchen Bergquist
Oxford, Nebraska
Age: 22


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Miss Nevada

Julianna Erdesz
Reno, Nevada
Age: 24


09 new hampshire 09 new hampshire2 211x300

Miss New Hampshire

Natalie C. Shaw
Manchester, New Hampshire
Age: 23


09 new jersey 09 new jersey2 209x300

Miss New Jersey

Ashley Fairfield
Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey
Age: 22


09 new mexico 09 new mexico2 209x300

Miss New Mexico

Christina Olmi
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Age: 24


09 newyork 09 newyork2 209x300

Miss New York

Leigh-Taylor Smith
New York City, New York
Age: 22


09 northcarolina 09 northcarolina2 211x300

Miss North Carolina

Amanda Lauren Watson
Raleigh, North Carolina
Age: 21


09 north dakota 09 north dakota2 211x300

Miss North Dakota

Tessie Jones
West Fargo, North Dakota
Age: 21


09 ohio 09 ohio2 210x300

Miss Ohio

Karissa Renee’ Martin
Woodsfield, Ohio
Age: 20


09 oklahoma 09 oklahoma2 210x300

Miss Oklahoma

Kelsey Cartwright
Collinsville, Oklahoma
Age: 21


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Miss Oregon

Danijela Krstic
Beaverton, Oregon
Age: 24


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Miss Pennsylvania

Kendria Perry
Nazareth, Pennsylvania
Age: 23


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Miss Rhode Island

Francesca Simone
North Smithfield, Rhode Island
Age: 22


09 south carolina 09 south carolina2 211x300

Miss South Carolina

Anna Perry
Florence, South Carolina
Age: 23


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Miss South Dakota

Alexandra Hoffman
Eureka, South Dakota
Age: 20


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Miss Tennessee

Ellen Carrington
Jackson, Tennessee
Age: 21


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Miss Texas

Rebecca Robinson
Buffalo, Texas
Age: 24


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Miss Utah

Kayla Barclay
Manti, Utah
Age: 18


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Miss Vermont

Ashley Ruth Wheeler
Lyndon, Vermont
Age: 21


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Miss Virgin Islands

Shamika K. Thomas
St. Thomas, Virgin Islands
Age: 23


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Miss Virginia

Tara Wheeler
Woodbridge, Virginia
Age: 24


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Miss Washington

Janet Harding
Yelm, Washington
Age: 21


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Miss West Virginia

Kayla Lynam
Short Gap, West Virginia
Age: 21


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Miss Wisconsin

Briana Lipor
Racine, Wisconsin
Age: 22


09 wyoming 09 wyoming2 209x300

Miss Wyoming

Courtney Gifford
Sheridan, Wyoming
Age: 19



If you want to see who these women beat to get here, this site is a pretty impressive run down of each state pageant with photos of the runners-up.

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