story & photos
by Maren Schober
On June 22, 35 young women from all over CT came pouring into the Radisson Hotel, New London, for days of preliminary events leading up to the climatic final event June 26th at the Garde Arts Center. They came with much hope and expectation and they came with tons of baggage. A virtual bevy of beauties, these ladies were Teen and Miss contestants competing for the crowns, college scholarships and the chance to compete in the national Miss America Outstanding Teen and Miss America pageants.
The final competition on Saturday, June 26th at the Garde Arts Center produced two winners: Miss CT 2010 Brittany Decker and Miss CT Outstanding Teen 2010 Logan West!
“The hardest thing for me this week is staying focused on what I am doing,” shares Brittany, 21, Bristol. “In all the excitement, it is difficult to stay focused.”
“My goal is to become a broadcaster in news reporting,” Brittany continues. “I was thrilled to have the opportunity to travel to Cambodia in 2009 where I was able to create a documentary for school and to volunteer in some of the poorest villages.” Brittany is creating awareness of third-world countries by bringing the message that we should appreciate and be thankful for all we have.
Brittany entered this year’s pageant as Miss Hartford County. During the week. she received. among other awards. the Spirit of Miss America Award, and the CT Community Service Award which comes with a $1,000 scholarship. She received a $5,000 scholarship as Miss CT and will represent CT at the Miss America Pageant in January 2011.
Logan, 16, Southington, also shares her hopes and dreams. “I love to dance and have danced most of my life. My goal is to be a dance member of the Alvin Ailey Co. and to own my own dance company. For the talent portion of the competition I tap danced to ‘My Lucky Coin.’”
Miss Logan is taking a stand against bullying. She spoke to more than 1,000 students on the negative effects of bullying and plans to share her program with students throughout CT. “When I was a seventh grader I was bullied by a classmate. I never want to see any other child go through what I did.”
Logan created, designed and implemented her own oral presentation and website www.stompingoutbullying.com.
At the end of finals night, Logan received several awards: Community Service Runner-Up, Overall Teen Interview, which carried a $100 scholarship, and Overall Talent, $100. She received a $1,000 scholarship as CT’s Outstanding Teen. Logan will now represent CT at Miss America’s Outstanding Teen Pageant in Orlando, FL in August.