PORTSMOUTH-After five years, the Miss Ohio Pageant will make its return to Portsmouth to host the prestigious competition.
Slated for the weekend of May 20, 2022, the Miss Ohio USA pageant will return to Portsmouth to find the next Miss Ohio USA. The pageant, which will occur at the Vern Riffe Center, is expected to draw a crowd to downtown Portsmouth and the surrounding area.
“We hosted the pageant for 13 years in Portsmouth,” Melissa Proctor said, Executive Director of Miss Ohio USA. “We experienced a little bit of a growth spurt and were bursting at the seams for a while there, but we always felt like Portsmouth was a home for Miss Ohio USA and Miss Ohio Teen USA and are excited to be returning.”
The pageant will take place at the Vern Riffe Center for the Arts on Shawnee State University’s campus and members of the event will be staying at several local hotels in Portsmouth and Ironton.
“You can’t beat that George Izenour design theatre,” Portsmouth-Scioto County Visitors Bureau Executive DirectorKim Bauer said. “We have a lot of hotels that are working hard to work with us and it’s just an honor to have them come back. We just feel so lucky that Miss Ohio is returning to Portsmouth.”
Proctor shared that many contestants came through Portsmouth and many title winners felt that a part of the organization changed when it left the city.
“They were really sad when we went to some other cities and we are excited that they will be coming back as well,” Proctor said. “Traditionally, the last time we were in Portsmouth, we had so many young women through the River Day’s program that participated in the state level.”
Proctor shared she wanted every woman and teen to know that anyone can apply to compete in the Miss Ohio USA and Miss Ohio Teen USA and encourages River Day’s contestants to sign up.
“I like the “Miss Congeniality” quote, “This is not a beauty pageant.” It helps these young ladies succeed,” Bauer said.” A lot of these young ladies go on and become attorneys, doctors, or pharmacists. A lot of these women use these interviews as a learning curve for when they go on job interviews.”
Women and teens who compete in the competition have the opportunity to be crowned Miss Ohio USA and compete in Miss USA.
“Whoever becomes the next Miss Ohio USA gets to compete against 50 other women for a $100,000 annual salary job, so it’s a luxury job and a luxury opportunity,” Proctor said. “Our Teen program will be vying for a $25,000 cash scholarship to any college of her choice, so it is really something that helps develop women.”
Proctor stressed that any young woman could apply to the Miss Ohio Teen and Miss Ohio USA program. Applicants will go through an application process and each individual is either accepted or not accepted to compete in the program. Proctor shared that those competitors will have to sign and follow an agreement with a vast number of moral clauses.
“We are looking for young women that will set good examples and be leaders in their communities,” Proctor said.
Once selected to compete in the state level competition, competitors will receive a title from their area. They will be able to go out and find local sponsors and then compete in the competition. Competitors will arrive at the host city and start with an interview competition when heading to the state competition. Then presentation shows including a swimsuit competition and evening gown competition for Miss Ohio USA.
“This is a great opportunity for these women,” Bauer said. “It helps build self-esteem and build opportunities. It’s not what people think and see in movies where they are backstabbing and stealing each other’s eyeliner. These girls are so caring and help one another through the whole process and build a family.”
Bauer said she is excited to show off Scioto County and show everyone what Portsmouth offers.
“The program draws a very large crowd to the area and shows off our local eateries and the local scenery,” Bauer said. We are just really looking forward to this and hope the community will get involved and come out and see these talented ladies.”
Tickets for the Miss USA and Teen USA programs can be purchased at the Vern Riffe Center for the Arts Box Office. If interested in applying to compete in Miss Ohio USA or Teen USA, visit http://www.missohiousa.com/
Reach Adam Black at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1927, or by email at [email protected]
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