The Unofficial Unmoderated MAO Message Board (2024)

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Date Posted: 19:35:23 01/13/24 Sat
Happy Miss America Eve! I had tried to get this together earlier and the day really got away from me. The MAOT pageant has just started. Truthfully, I am not interested enough in watching it.

I hope you are busy planning your tomorrow evening, good food, maybe a party? This week kind of snuck up on everyone, but it was an enjoyable week. The fashion show was very well done last night. They played music the first hour but once it started it was very nice. All the contestants had red gowns and walked the runway in them. Both the teen and Miss contestants wore dresses. I couldn't get exactly what but Jovani is partnering with Miss America. They also announced that Miss America is partnering with the American Heart Association, which is welcome news. To get back into the public eye, we do need to partner with some well-known charities.

I want to first state that if your favorite does not make the top 10 tomorrow night, please do not be upset. First of all, the competition this year is REALLY good. There are an above average number of contestants who are really shining and did everything right. There are only 10 spots with an 11th for the People's Choice. There could easily be a top 15 and it would be filled and still some deserving contestants could be left standing. It is absolutely no reflection on them. But the bigger issue is that there were only four judges for preliminary panels. You may get some really unusual results for the top 10, anyway. I trust that the cream will rise to the top. But once again, the results could be a bit unusual, and it is no fault of your favorite. You do the best you can, and I have no doubt each contestant gave it their very best. They can all feel proud of themselves. They are all still trying to compete amid a lot of changes in the system.

Keep in mind there are 10 spots open, 1 people's choice, and the potential of up to 9 preliminary winners in this year's format. Even under the old format not everyone made the top 10 and some not even the top 15. In the 2001 pageant, the only year with a top 20 Miss GA won a preliminary swimsuit award and was not in the top 20. In 2015 Miss IA won double preliminaries in Alpha, which was the toughest talent group of the week and failed to make the top 10. So, you really never know. I do not see any scenario in which all 8 preliminary winners make it into the top 10. So, here are my thoughts on the contestants and their chances:

DO NOT SEE ADVANCING-Although they did their best, I did not see anyone in this group who overall stood out over the more consistent competitors this week. Some might have even excelled in one competition but did not in the rest. They are:

AK-She attempted to do her own style of His Eye is on the Sparrow. I admire that she tried to make it original, but it did not seem to work that well. She did not stand out among the other competitors but I am sure Alaska is very proud of her.
CT-She seems like a lovely girl, she just really didn't stand out in any competition where I found her to be near the top of the group. I wish her the best for her future and she represents such a beautiful state.
DE-I mentioned to a previous poster that she seems quite ambitious and I have no doubt she will go far in life. She speaks very eloquently and always had a smile on her face. While she didn't stand out this week I am confident she will be a great Miss Delaware.
DC-Jade has won in 2 major systems and that in and of itself is impressive. I think it speaks to how talented and accomplished she is. Her talent was very good, she was a bit more laid back in other areas of competition. However, she's a lovely young woman and I admire her success in two programs.
IA-Unfortunately, she just didn't stand out to me this week in any of the different competitions. She did speak very nicely and was very heartfelt about her diabetes diagnosis and how competing in the Miss America system helped her. I am proud for everything she has accomplished.
KS-Courtney was really energetic in tap and she looked nice in gown. I just think overall, she didn't have enough spark to stand out from among the tough competition this week but I know she came at her absolute best. I wish her much success as she continues as Miss Kansas.
NV-She was very cute and entertaining in talent. I didn't think she stood out among the other contestants, but she always had a nice smile on her face and exuded a lot of happiness.
NM-She had a nice voice and was able to successfully take on Never Enough. She didn't quite stand out to me in other areas this week but I know she's got a bright future ahead of her in her beautiful state.
ND-She did very well with her onstage question and did well enough in talent. I just do not think she had enough to separate from the competition but she had a very good week and should be very proud of herself.
OH-I really enjoyed her this week. She is youthful, a good piano player and seems very goal oriented. I just am not sure she did enough to stand out in the tough competition but I think she's a wonderful young woman.
PA-She always had a nice smile on her face everything that she did, and she has a very unique and interesting platform regarding the environmental impact of the fashion industry. She seems to be very goal-oriented as well. I wish her the best and I would love to hear more about her platform.
SD-She was a very nice singer and I thought she looked great in her talent gown. The big question is did she pick it out before TSwift started showing up in red as well? (haha) She always had a nice smile on her face and I know did her very best all week.
VT-I think Yamuna is a very interesting and accomplished young woman. I have read a little bit about her and her life, and she seems quite fascinating. Although she didn't seem to set herself apart this week I trust she will go a long way in helping to educate our young people.
VA-I really, really liked that she chose emotional abuse as a platform and I enjoyed her talent. I just did not see some of the energy of previous Miss Virginias but I really do like her and I really think she showed us who she was this week. I got a clear sense of her and I liked what I have seen. Best of luck to her in her future, it's going to be a bright one.
WY-She is a very pretty girl and I think she would thrive in the USA system. I really hope she gives it a try there. She is tall and has a commanding presence. She also had a young, chic wardrobe. While I did not think she stood out among this year's competition I think she has a lot of potential for other pageant systems, and I hope she gives it a try.

LONGSHOTS-I would not be totally shocked to see any one of these in the top 10 but I am leaning towards not:

CA-She did very well in fitness in gown; in fact, I would have not been surprised to see her as a preliminary winner in each. Her talent was a bit weaker for me, she just sounded so stiff and wasn't able to really connect with it. I just didn't get anything from her that would really put her into the top 10, though.
IL-I really liked her all week, and I really liked her talent. She didn't quite stand out as much as some of the others and seemed not as strong as some of the Miss Illinois of the last few years, but I do think she put her best foot forward. I am just not sure she was quite at the level of top 10.
KY-I think gown was her strongest category and she comes from a state which has no shortage of success at Miss America. That is why I am not counting her out. Realistically, I am not sure she is as competitive as some of the others.
LA-She also comes from a state with no shortage of success at Miss America, and I know she is at her best. Her talent was definitely entertaining. I am just not sure she stood out in other categories enough.
MN-She is very cute and I liked her vibe. She has had a good competition, and she was consistent in all categories. I think it would all come down to interview.
MO-I think she was on the better end of average for all of her competitions but she did not quite have the spark that would have set her apart. I think she was actually wise to change her talent for Miss America, and she did a nice tap dance. I liked her costume, too.
NE-She was a beautiful dancer, and I loved everything about her performance. She might not have stood out as much as some of the others and Nebraska is having some success at Miss America, so I wouldn't be totally shocked to see her.
NJ-I hope she gets an NFT if we do not see her in the top 10. She gave a beautiful, heartfelt performance of Over The Rainbow. It was really nice. I didn't think she stood out to me in other categories enough, and that is why I do not necessarily have her solidly in contention.
WA-She was doing well the first night of competition, and she is really cute and fresh. I just think her talent was a bit weaker and because of that, she might not make the top 10. But I did think she was very likeable and I know she's got a bright future ahead of her.

ANY ONE OF THE FOLLOWING I COULD SEE IN THE TOP 10, HERE IS HOW I BREAK THEM DOWN:

DECENT POSSIBILITY-All of these contestants have been not the loudest or have "the most" presence but have been consistent and performing well throughout the week:

AZ-Tiffany is one of my pleasant surprises of the week. She looked good in fitness and gown and I was really impressed with what she did with Because You Loved Me. I would have given her a 7 in just about every category, and that consistency can help you get into the top 10.
FL-I saw the state pageant and she did very well, but I am not sure she has brought that fire this week. She seemed a bit off the first night, she bumbled her words a bit when she spoke in OSQ, didn't seem confident in fitness or like something was off. She recovered nicely the second night with a strong talent. She wasn't quite consistent all week and seemed a bit off but the state reputation alone makes her at least a consideration for the top 10.
HI-She is also another contestant like AZ who while didn't knock every category out of the park was very consistent. HI contestants bring the aloha spirit and Star does seem to have a special spark to her. She just reminds me of one of those contestants that if they like her, she will go far.
ID-She was another one of my pleasant surprises this week. I noticed her a lot on the first night. Her talent would have been just fine if she stayed with piano. Sadly, some people do not see athletic talent as something to be judged, but I do. I think she nealty figured out how to do both. She is probably one of Idaho's strongest representatives in a long time at MAO.
ME-With her preliminary talent win she has to be at least considered. I didn't see much from her the first night but she also has something very unique about her. I hate the phrase "typical pageant girl" but she's really not. If that resonated with the judges we may see her the top 10. For many reasons, I would like to see her there.
MA-Had Chelsea not made that unfortunate talent choice I would have had her in the next category. Talent is only 20 percent but it does make a difference because there have been many well-rounded contestants. She is highly intelligent and if she so eloquently told the judges in interview how she could fix the MAO's problems I think she sold them. She is also pleasant and likeable, and she's a great young woman. If she doesn't make it it's probably the talent.
MT-She is another one of my favorite pleasant surprises this week. She is definitely the best Miss Montana has sent in years. Like some of the others while she doesn't scream stage presence, there is something about her. She has been very consistent all week and I would LOVE to see Montana have some success. If there is any year, this would be it.
NH-Another one this week who is a pleasant surprise. She has identified herself as a doctor, and she has been very consistent all week. I like her spark-she definitely has one. She seems very intelligent, and there's something about her energy that is very positive. Her talent was engaging. I think that's a word I would use with her-engaging. I think if she engages the judges well we will see her in the top 10. She definitely has charisma.
OR-Allison is very cute and she seems to have something that draws you in. Once again, she has been consistent all week. Also, OR has had big successes the past two years and I believe that they are program whose time has arrived. I could very easily see another top 10 this year and based on her likeability I think she could go far.
RI-I keep saying this but she is another one of my favorite pleasant surprises this week. She has been consistent and although she doesn't have the loudest charisma, she has an understated elegance. Her talent was a nice performance of Imagine, done with just the right amount of energy. I really would love to see her.
SC-She is iffy for me, perhaps the most iffy of the whole competition. You definitely notice her onstage; she's got a great look. She did look nice in gown, and her talent was spoken with passion in her voice. I said that she resonated with people in the audience but to be fair, it could have been her own cheering section. I just don't know, because she has been inconsistent and sometimes a little off her game as well.

COULD REALISTICALLY MAKE TOP 10:
AR-She is a very strong possibility for me. She has been good all week, her talent probably scored very well. Her state is certainly successful at Miss America. After a few years out I think it's time for them to return, and Cori has been strong all week.
GA-Georgia is successful enough and has a great program that whoever they send you must consider a chance at the top 10. Tara has certainly been consistent across this week and she has a commanding way of speaking. I could easily see her in the top 10.
IN-Speaking of pleasant surprises, she has been VERY consistent this week. She really shined in every competition, including talent. Of all of the contestants this week, I felt like I connected WITH her. I know what she is about, who she is, and what she brings to the table. She has one of those unique qualities where she really reflects herself when she competes. Indiana hasn't had much success since Katie Stam, but I really think that could change this year. I really hope that we see her in the top 10. She's certainly done enough all week to earn it.
MI-With the preliminary win she's got to be considered for the top 10. She is really cute and she may not be the most memorable in each category, but she's also got something very likeable. Sort of like Teresa Scanlan, only a little more mature and polished. She is just one of those contestants who if the judges like I could see going very far.
MS-With her preliminary fitness win you cannot count her out. Also, based on state reputation and success alone, I have her here. If she was from another state I'd say no. Also her talent is if I am being honest, subpar to some others I have seen this week. But with the win and state reputation she has to be at least considered for the top 10. Of all of these I am mentioning she would be the least surprising not to see advance.
UT-She has been extremely consistent this week, including in talent. UT always sends a talented winner and this year is no exception. Sarah really shines onstage, you notice her, she always has a nice smile that conveys enthusiasm. If UT sends a good candidate we usually see them in the top 10. I really see that as a possibility this year, and I see her going far if that happens.

MY STRONGEST POSSIBILITIES FOR THE TOP 10:
AL-She won preliminary gown and she was strong in talent as well. AND this is Alabama who is usually a staple of the top 10. I think she's a lock for the top 10 and possibly the top 5. She's just about firmly in for me.
CO-Madison has been very consistent all week, and like Indiana, she is the few who I really got to know onstage. You know exactly who she is. She also has the kind of resume Miss America loves. I think all of those things will get her into the top 10.
MD-With two preliminary wins, I think she is a lock for the top 10. Her talent was consistent enough, and I feel like her platform is young and relevant. It would really be nice to see Maryland finally have a Miss America.
NY-Miss NY always also has to be considered as a top 10 potential as of late, and Amelia is certainly well-prepared through all of her experience here and Volunteer America. That being said, I am just keeping it real. She seemed stronger at Volunteer America than she is this week at Miss America. Look at Victoria Hill who competed at Miss America and then wasn't as strong at Miss Volunteer America. She did well enough on her dancing but I have seen better when she competed at Volunteer America. I am a big fan of Amelia and would want her to do well; I think she might have done better with a little more energy. But she's still going to have the best competitive edge going into tomorrow night.
NC-She was memorable the first night and after that amazing talent, she catapulted into a top contender. There are no holes in her competition, she has strong presence as well. Of the talent winners she is the one I could see in the top 5.
OK-Sunny has been on fire all week, no pun intended. She is shining throughout the competition and she absolutely has her A game. She did at Miss Oklahoma as well, but her talent has improved since then. While she's not the best singer she made the most of the song. Of the non-preliminary winners she has been the most consistent to me.
TN-She had a really great week, including a preliminary win. I had her high in gown and she did impress in swimsuit. Her talent is certainly good enough, not outstanding, but I have seen a lot less win. She has been very consistent, confident, and she really has brought her A game. She is a solid contender for me.
TX-She's Miss TX after all. I am going to be honest-her presence hasn't been overwhelming this week, somewhat like Averie last year. They both seem a little bit more subdued than at their Miss TX pageant. However, I could probably say the same of Ellie at Miss TX. I do not think she has to have a lot of overwhelming presence to make you notice her elegance. She just has something about the way she carries herself and even though her talent isn't perfect, she has something about her that draws you in. She is young and contemporary and I think she looks like a young woman of today with a touch of regal.
WI-Lila is doing great all week. She definitely has energy, her talent was probably second best to me on talent night, although ME was very good as well. Look, Wisconsin is one of those states where if they have someone with potential they see it every time at Miss America. Lila does have strong talent, was memorable on the first night and has a lot of stage presence. Although it is not likely I haven't totally ruled out back-to-back wins for Wisconsin. I am not sure she is quite as strong as Grace but she's got a lot going for her.

So, who do I see winning?

Truthfully I am not sure. If they are going strictly by competition it could be anyone's to win. I have seen a lot of strong competition all week. This could go many different ways. We do not even really have an idea of who will be in the top 10. It could be filled with more surprises than the same old same old. I did look over the judging panel for final night and they definitely have an entertainment focus. I do think they would gravitate towards a younger, modern-type winner. If that is the case I could definitely see TX take it, also OK. If they are looking for a classic winner with a marketable talent, I could see it going to NC. But I really am not sure. Here's a longshot prediction, without any real basis, just a possibility: I could see either NY or TX missing the finals. I am saying this because they are usually so certain but nothing is guaranteed. I did see somewhat of a dropoff in Amelia's energy this week and while it makes sense to have her there, nothing is certain. Also with Ellie, although I would love to see her win her energy is a bit off as well. I know it's hard to say when she won a preliminary but she does have a somewhat quieter vibe than at Miss TX. So, I just don't know. I could be totally wrong, but I do not see this out of the realm of possibility because there have been many other contestants who have stepped up to the game this week. If they are going for cute/personable like Teresa and Cara, I am going to say MI. People like to see interesting crowd-pleasing talent. I could see her getting some invitations from morning shows to stop by and do that. I could also see CO as an overall strong pick. Let's face it-Miss America has never shied away from picking a strongly motivated winner. Grace (nuclear engineering), Camille, Cara (in law school), Teresa (now in law school), Deidre (physician), Erika (lawyer) the list goes on.

So, tomorrow night is going to be interesting, if anything! Who are your picks? Please let us know.

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