08/22/14 — Come see what she will wear at the pageant

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Come see what she will wear at the pageant

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on August 22, 2014 1:46 PM

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Miss North Carolina, Beth Stovall

It's not easy being queen.

But the reigning Miss North Carolina, Beth Stovall, said so far the nerves associated with preparing for the upcoming Miss America Pageant haven't hit her yet.

"I still feel eager and anxious. I feel great," she said. "I'm enjoying every single second, even the days that are long and I feel like I'll never get everything done. I'm never going to get to live this again."

The Goldsboro native said she appreciates the opportunity, mindful of all the young girls with similar aspirations.

"I'm trying to be the best representative that I can be for them and for my family and the whole state of North Carolina," she said.

The 2011 graduate of Rosewood High School would have been starting classes at UNC-Wilmington, where she is a rising senior vocal performance major. Instead, since receiving the state crown in June, she is taking a year off from her studies to concentrate on the national event.

This was her second bid for the state title. As Miss Goldsboro 2013, she made it to the Top 10 and also won a talent award. This year she returned, as Miss Greater Sampson County, and won the crown.

The weeks since have been packed with activity, including moving into a Garner apartment and picking up a new car, both part of her prize package, and making appearances in and out of the state.

That aspect of the job has been replaced with preparations to go to Atlantic City and compete with other state representatives for the coveted title of Miss America. She leaves Sept. 1 and will be there for two weeks. Preliminary events take place the week of Sept. 8 and the pageant airs on ABC Sunday evening, Sept. 14.

"It's been nice to just spend time at home before I go off," she said Monday. "It has been hectic -- making sure my wardrobe is together, preparing for the physical fitness competition, practicing interview. I have had a lot of mock interviews. I'm practicing talent on a daily basis.

"It's all coming together, slowly but surely."

There are a couple of ways Miss Stovall's community can support her in the coming weeks.

On Sunday, there will be a wardrobe showing at the Paramount Theatre at 3 p.m. Tickets are $10 each and will be available at the door.

"I'm going to be performing my talent. That's what I'm most excited about," she said, as well as giving a sneak peak of the outfits she will wear in Atlantic City, including the "Parade of States" dress, "Show your Shoes" costume, her interview dress and the outfit she'll wear during the talent portion of the program.

"We're hoping that I can show my swimsuit and two evening gowns," she added. "We're still trying to get those together."

In addition to Miss Stovall, other entertainment is planned for the afternoon event, said Beth Knox, executive director of the Miss North Carolina organization.

Emcee will be Lane Ragsdale, while former Miss North Carolina 2000, Lorna McNeil Ricotta, who is also on the Miss North Carolina board of directors, will sing. Three other contestants from this year's state pageant will also perform.

First runner-up McKenzie Faggart, Miss Cabarrus County, will dance. Comfort Johnson, Miss Greater Carolina, who made it to this year's Top 10 and was winner of the title of Miss Congeniality, will sing. And Miss Greater Cape Fear, Victoria Baskett, will play the flute.

From now through midnight Sept. 12, residents can also go online and cast a vote for "People's Choice." Votes can be cast at www.missamerica.org/vote or www.facebook.com/missamerica. There is only one vote per person per method, with the winner to be named during the broadcast.

Miss Stovall invites her hometown to go online and watch her video, which was filmed during a recent visit to Wayne County.

"I went home and got on my swingset in my own back yard," she said with a laugh.

For those interested in being in the Atlantic City audience for Miss America, tickets are still available through Ticketmaster, Mrs. Knox said.