From the Cowboy State……

A big congratulations to Atana Velasquez, the new Mrs. Wyoming America 2013!!!


The stunning beauty was crowned at the Central High Performing Arts Center in Cheyenne on Saturday, June 2 in front of friends and family, including her husband of seven years, Nathaniel.  Entering the pageant representing Douglass, she also won the Best in Evening Gown and Most Photogenic awards. Now she moves on to compete in the Mrs. America pageant this August in Tucson, Arizona.

Other finalists and award winners were: Mrs. Laramie – 1st RU and Best in Swimsuit award winner, Best in Interview award winner and Mrs. Congeniality winner;  Mrs Gillette -2nd RU and also Director’s Choice award winner and    Mrs, Casper – Marriage Longevity Award who has been married for 20 years.


Also on hand to congratulate and celebrate with the newest member of Wyoming’s royalty were her predecessors and Mrs. Wyoming sisters:


From left to right – Amy Moon(2007), Lauren Deluca(2010), MRS. WYOMING 2013, Heather Clemens(2012), Sheree Lynch(2002) Joanna {Hamilton} Dobos (2009) and LaKell Archer(2011).


Photo Credit: Jeff Johnson Portraits

Congratulations Atana and welcome to the Mrs. America family!!!!

For more information on the Mrs. Wyoming America pageant visit

** Photos courtesy of Mrs. Wyoming America pageant


Muy Linda !!!!!

Congratulations to Miss República Dominicana Global 2013 Marilyn Batista, and Miss T.E.E.N. República Dominicana 2013 Ana Matias, on winning their titles this past weekend.

Newly crowned winners of the Miss República Dominicana Global and Miss T.E.E.N. República Dominicana 2013 and outgoing Republica Dominicana Global Queen. (Courtesy of



Miss República Dominicana Global 2013 and Miss T.E.E.N. República Dominicana 2013 with event producers.

The pageant, which was held in Santo Domingo, D.R., was produced by Yuliza Encarnacion, Ms. Belleza Latina International 2012 and Carlos Machuca.


The winners will represent the Dominican Republic at the Miss Global International Pageant, which will be held in Nigeria, Africa and the Miss T.E.E.N. Pageant 2013  in Houston, Texas.

To learn more about both pageant systems, visit their websites!!

Miss Global International –

Miss T.E.E.N.  –

Living like a M.R.S……….

Annually, droves of married women and their families travel to the desert oasis, otherwise known as Las Vegas to compete for the one and only coveted M.R.S. crown!

MRs crown

This year is no exception, and I personally can’t wait to see the outcome of this year’s contest!  It’s always blast, especially the state costumes!!!


I will have to admit that the Mrs. United States pageants is one of my favorites. For no other reason than it was my first national Mrs. pageant.


Me with Mrs. United States Executive Director Isabella Illacqua

It was a great experience and I met tons of friends.  That’s the beauty of pageantry, the opportunity to meet dynamic women from all over the country. Knowing that no matter how far apart you may be or how frequently (or not) you see one another, you’ll always be a part of a special “sorority”, a group that an exclusive few belong too !!  For me, it’s the Mrs. United States Class of 2005!


Some of the Class of 2005 in state costume!!!

Take a look at some photos of the reigning and previous Mrs. United States titleholders


Aquila Vang, Mrs. United States 2012


Rachel Jullierat, Mrs. United States 2010

White, white everywhere

Stephanie Hunt, Mrs. United States 2007


Dr. Chiann Gibson, Mrs. United States 2005

Get to Know………Miss Delaware International 2013

Pageants & Pearls spent some time last week getting to know Crystal Rush, Miss Delaware International 2013 through a Q & A session…. a pretty amazing lady if we do say so ourselves.  Don’t believe me, read for yourself!

Crystal Rush #267 - bw 8x10(2)

Q) What has been the most exciting thing that you’ve done as Miss Delaware so far?

A) “I have done so many exciting things. Every day I am blessed with new opportunities. I would say starting a chapter at my university is the most powerful thing I’ve done so far. It’s been exciting to get involved with my peers and constantly educate the public. Through the chapter I was able to organize a walk that raised money for Autism research.  I have also devoted my thesis to Autism research, so it’s been great digging through journals and articles to expand my work with Autism advocacy.”
Q) Who has been the most memorable person you’ve met so far and why?
A) Again, I meet so many wonderful and memorable people. It’s hard to list just one. At the Annual Autism Delaware Auction for Autism, I met a young man with Autism who got up and performed a country song. I spoke with him before he went on and he was nervous but ready to show everyone a different side of him. Half way through the song, he had the entire audience up on their feet cheering and singing along. I don’t think the actual singer could have topped his performance.
Q) What do you plan to do with your degree?
A) I plan to continue working in the public service sector. I want to utilize my skills and talents to better the community and change lives.
Q) What is your favorite memory with your niece?
A) My nieces are my biggest joy! Just last weekend we went for ice cream and she had me and my other niece, Kiara,  laughing until we cried with her “funny faces” she likes to do.  The most exciting memory we share is when we were recently in a local parade. It was a great experience sitting on the tailgate together and waving to the crowd. After I enjoyed telling everyone about Skye and her story and just sharing that moment with her was something I will never forget.
Q) Is there an organization that you would like to work with (that you haven’t already)?  Why?
A) I have tied myself to the local organizations in Delaware, but I am looking to expand my advocacy on a national level. 
Q) What are you most looking forward to at the International pageant?
A) Meeting the other girls and sharing my platform. Since I won Miss Delaware International, my favorite part has been sharing my story. I absolutely love having the chance to tell everyone what my platform is and why I am so passionate about it.
SPEED ROUND – FAVORITES……..We gave Crystal a category and she had to say the first thing that came to mind!!!!!
1) Color – Green or Blue. My favorite color changes all the time. I can’t help it! 🙂
2) Food – Pizza (can’t live without it!)
3) Dessert – My grandma’s Angel Food cake. This was my grandfather’s favorite and is mine, too!
4) Subject in school – Psychology
5) Celebrity – Jenny McCarthy. First, I love how funny and real she is. Secondly, I love that her son is on the spectrum and she uses her celebrity status to raise money and awareness. I have her books. She is awesome! Go Jenny!! 🙂
6) Season – Fall, I love the rich colors that come out in the fall and hot apple cider on crisp autumn nights.
7) Clothing item – Dresses, nothing is easier or cuter than a pretty sundress and wedges.
Good luck at International this summer Crystal!
To book Crystal for an appearance, please contact

Multi-State Pageants …..a good thing?

Have you ever wondered why, when you’re looking for a pageant in your state you’ll end up on a site to a competition listing four or five states?


Well, welcome to the world of the multi-state pageants !!!  Some directors, primarily on the East Coast and Mid-Atlantic region, find it to be a cost saver or a way to increase their candidate pool.  Unlike the massively large states of California, Texas, or Florida…..tiny states in the East (Maryland, Delaware, Maine, Rhode Island) often have a hard time recruiting contestants.

The Beauty of Giving Back

It’s not a bad thing, it’s actually pretty fun….especially when you competing in a state preliminary.  What’s more fun than heading to a national pageant already knowing someone!!!  Makes roommate selection pretty easy 🙂

So the next time you searching for Miss DC Pretty and Smart and you wind up on Miss DC/VA/NH/VA – don’t be shocked, it could be a very good thing!


Here are some pretty cool multi-state pageants

1) Multi State High School America (MD/PA/NJ/NY & DE) –

2) Tri- State Cinderella Pageants ( MD/DE/NJ) –


White, white every where

Sitting in the house watching what will soon amount to 24-30″ of snow in the area has me thinking bout the notion that white evening gowns always win Mrs. pageants.  For years, many a coach told their clients that “if you want to win, you must wear a white gown”.  Suffice it to say, there were plenty of visual statistics to back up that claim.

Andrea Preuss, who was crowned Mrs. United States 2003 and Mrs. America 2006, wore a white evening gown in both national pageants.

Four of the last 10 Mrs. United States winners, in addition to Andrea, all competed in white gowns: Edrienne Carpenter (2004), Dr. Chiann Gibson (2005), Stephanie Hunt (2007) & Tammy Johns (2009).  Along with Mrs. America 2005, several other Mrs. Americas also competed in white evening gowns and won the national title – Heidi Dinan (2003), Julie Love-Templeton (2004) & Kelly McBee (2007)

Defying Most Views – THE D/M/V – 10 to 1

Wow!!!!!  The Mid-Atlantic Region – recently nicknamed the DMV (District of Columbia-Maryland-Virginia) was on FIRE this past weekend.  Not only did the beautiful and intelligent Kamie Crawford win the Miss Teen USA 2010 title on Saturday evening, but the DMV’s contestants in the Miss International Pageant showed up and showed out as well.  All THREE ladies were selected to the top 10 from their personal interviews and preliminary competition on Thursday evening.  As top 10 contestants, they competed in finals night on Saturday. 

Chelsey Rodgers, Miss District of Columbia International 2010 (left) is an attorney with a solo-practice in Washington, DC.   An alumna of Spelman College and Howard University Law School she spoke on-stage during Saturday’s final competition about her platform “Building Healthy Self-Esteem” and her organization the Miss Congeniality Foundation.   Chelsey is also a form Miss District of Columbia USA  !!! 

Tamika Mills, Miss Virginia International 2010 (center) not only made top 10 in this year’s competition, she placed as the 1st Runner Up to Miss international 2010  is registered dental hygienist who spoke about the near fatal car crash the organization that sparked her platform work – Operation Smile!  An alumna of Old Dominion University and Delta Zeta sister, this beauty queen spent many years competing in the Miss Virginia America Organization.  

Heather Young, Miss Maryland International 2010 (right) promoted her platform of “Let’s Bring Them Home” – her passion for helping missing and exploited persons.  This current University of Baltimore student carries a 3.8 GPA and is the Vice President of her university’s Undergraduate Student Senate.


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