Meet the new Miss America

Teresa Scanlan, the 17 year-old Miss Nebraska, will wear the crown in 2011

Topics: Beauty Pageants,

Meet the new Miss AmericaMiss Nebraska, Teresa Scanlan, left, followed by Miss Nevada Cris Crotz and Miss New Hampshire, Krystal Lee Muccioli walk in the "Show Us Your Shoes" parade as part of this week's Miss America festivities Friday, Jan. 14, 2011 in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)(Credit: AP)

A 17-year-old from Nebraska became the youngest winner of the Miss America crown in 90 years on Saturday after beating 52 other young women from across the United States.

Teresa Scanlan won a $50,000 scholarship and a yearlong run with the crown at the competition at the Planet Hollywood casino-resort in Las Vegas, giving the Cornhusker State its first-ever win at the pageant.

She was the youngest Miss America since the pageant’s first competition in 1921, when Margaret Gorman of the District of Columbia won at age 15.

Miss Arkansas Alyse Eady won $25,000 as first runner-up, while Miss Hawaii Jalee Fuselier won $20,000 for third place.

Scanlan, a recent high school graduate from the western Nebraska town of Gering, planned to study American politics at Patrick Henry College in Virginia after her reign as Miss America.

She also hoped to attend law school, become a judge and eventually a politician, according to her pageant biography.

Scanlan won after strutting in a black bikini and a white evening gown, playing “White Water Chopped Sticks” on piano and telling the audience that when it comes to the website Wikileaks, security should come before public access to government information.

“You know when it came to that situation, it was actually based on espionage, and when it comes to the security of our nation, we have to focus on security first and then people’s right to know, because it’s so important that everybody who’s in our borders is safe and so we can’t let things like that happen, and they must be handled properly,” she said.

The contestants — from every state plus the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico — started the show by dancing up the aisles while wearing silver cocktail dresses.

A panel of seven judges eyed them for looks and fitness. The competition included evening gown, talent and interview portions, with eliminations for 15 finalists, then 12, then 10, five and finally the winner along the way.



The judges had picked Miss Oklahoma Emoly West; Miss Texas Ashley Melnick; Miss Rhode Island Deborah Saint-Vil; Miss Utah Christina Lowe; Miss Washington Jacquie Brown; Miss Arizona Kathryn Bulkley; Miss Virginia Caitlin Uze, and Miss California Arianna Afsar.

Fans voted in Miss New York Claire Buffie and Miss Delaware Kayla Martell.

And in a first-ever twist for the contest, the young women picked two finalists themselves, Miss Kentucky Djuan Trent and Miss Oregon Stephenie Denise Steers.

In her introduction to the audience, Bulkley dedicated her performance to U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who was shot in the head last week in Tucson. Bulkley called Giffords her mentor.

The pageant celebrated its 90th anniversary this year.

More Related Stories

Featured Slide Shows

  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on Facebook
  • 1 of 11
  • Close
  • Fullscreen
  • Thumbnails
    Rose Jay via Shutterstock

    Most popular dog breeds in America

    Labrador Retriever

    These guys are happy because their little brains literally can't grasp the concept of global warming.

    Hysteria via Shutterstock

    Most popular dog breeds in America

    German Shepherd

    This momma is happy to bring her little guy into the world, because she doesn't know that one day they'll both be dead.

    Christian Mueller via Shutterstock

    Most popular dog breeds in America

    Golden Retriever

    I bet these guys wouldn't be having so much fun if they knew the sun was going to explode one day.

    WilleeCole Photography via Shutterstock

    Most popular dog breeds in America

    Bulldog

    This dude thinks he's tough, but only because nobody ever told him about ISIS.

    Soloviova Liudmyla via Shutterstock

    Most popular dog breeds in America

    Beagle

    This little lady is dreaming about her next meal-- not Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

    Labrador Photo Video via Shutterstock

    Most popular dog breeds in America

    Yorkshire Terrier

    This trusting yorkie has never even heard the name "Bernie Madoff."

    Pavla via Shutterstock

    Most popular dog breeds in America

    Poodle

    She is smiling so widely because she is too stupid to understand what the Holocaust was.

    Aneta Pics via Shutterstock

    Most popular dog breeds in America

    Boxer

    Sure, frolic now, man. One day you're going to be euthanized and so is everyone you love.

    Dezi via Shutterstock

    Most popular dog breeds in America

    French Bulldog

    He's on a casual afternoon stroll because he is unfamiliar with the concept of eternity.

    Jagodka via Shutterstock

    Most popular dog breeds in America

    Rottweiler

    Wouldn't it be nice if we could all be this care-free? But we can't because we are basically all indirectly responsible for slavery.

  • Recent Slide Shows

Comments

0 Comments

Comment Preview

Your name will appear as username ( settings | log out )

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href=""> <b> <em> <strong> <i> <blockquote>