Meet Iain Thomas, the 36-year-old South African poet who is famous all over the world except in SA

Trevor Noah has pulled out at the last minute from hosting the MAMAs 2016, due to 'a severe upper respiratory infection'

PICS: Miss America 2016 crowned

2015-09-14 10:52

Atlantic City - Miss Georgia Betty Cantrell is the new Miss America.

Cantrell rode an opera performance to the title in Atlantic City's Boardwalk Hall on Sunday night, besting 51 other competitors in the nationally televised pageant.

The pageant also marked the return of Miss America 1984 Vanessa Williams, who was back for the first time after resigning the crown following a nude photo scandal. Pageant executive chairman Sam Haskell apologised to Williams on behalf of the pageant.

"I want to apologise for anything that was said or done," Haskell told Williams as they stood on the stage. "Vanessa: Welcome back!"

For Williams, who went on to stardom on television and on the Broadway stage, it was a triumphant return to the Miss America stage.

"I did the best I could in my reign as Miss America," she said during Sunday's pageant.

Cantrell sang an opera number for her talent performance.

She won a preliminary competition earlier in the week, also with an opera performance.

Miss Georgia's win ended New York's dominance at the Miss America pageant. Last year's Miss America, Kira Kazantsev, was the third consecutive Miss New York to win the title.

"I can't believe it's been a year since I was backstage getting ready to compete, just as the contestants are right now," Kazantsev said at a press conference on Tuesday afternoon in Boardwalk Hall. "

Preliminary competition in talent, interviews, evening wear and swimsuit competition ran through Thursday.

On Saturday, the Miss America contestants hit the Atlantic City Boardwalk for the annual "Show Us Your Shoes" parade.

Most of the shoes had designs specific to the contestant's home states. New Jersey, for instance, had dice and Monopoly money on her shoes in a nod to the pageant's Atlantic City history. Miss Idaho had a potato.

Contestants from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico were vying for the crown. The US Virgin islands, which competed last year, could not field the required minimum number of entrants this year, pageant officials said. It is eligible for future competitions.

(Photos: AP)



Recent News

We had a quick chat with Penny Rider about taking that all important first star baker award in the new season of SA Bake Off. Read More »

A source told Channel24 that the SABC won’t see another episode of 7de Laan if there’s no signed contract by Monday. Read More »

inside channel 24

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.