Jan 31, 2012

Miss America Pageant Exclusive Photo's

Behind the Scenes with Rex Winterton and Dixie Henrie

It's the Super Bowl of the Beauty World.  The pageants have been held across America.  The queens were all chosen six months earlier.  All contestants, parents, and their individiual teams have worked hard at getting sponsors for additional financial help.  These pageants are not cheap by any means.  What the girls and their teams earn, learn, and put to good use, will be remembered forever.

The girls all arrive one week early in Vegas so they can not only have fun, and go to special sponsored events sponsored by the City of Las Vegas and also the Miss America Pageant. 
Photo by Rex Winterton
This is Rex's seventh year covering the Miss America Pageant.  He always brings an assistant so they can take photos from various positions during the preliminary shows and during the final show on Saturday evening. 
Photo by Rex Winterton

They pick up our credentials upstairs at Planet Hollywood from the Miss America Organization.  That's where they meet up with Bonnie MacIssac.  Bonnie has been with the MAO for several years too and they have become close friends.  Bonnie was very happy to see me this year.
Photo by Rex Winterton

After picking up their credentials from the MAO they line up a few interviews for Thursday afternoon with Miss Nevada, Alana Lee, and Miss Utah, Danica Olsen.  For a photographer and writer interviewer they always hope that the contestant doesn't think they are a "dummy" compared to other press members.  They do well and get real with as the contestants laugh and cry, and seemed to enjoy their time being interviewed.
Photo by Rex Winterton

Miss Nevada, Alana Lee, she was very relaxed and very much at ease when describing her ambitions of being a news anchor woman on the news, and how she's has dreams  of being the President of the United States of America.  Big dreams, big aspirations, but atainable.  Her dreams for being a news anchor take her to three major U.S. cities.  Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and New York.

Photo by Rex Winterton
Miss Utah, Danica Olsen, who won the swimsuit/fashion portion of the pageant on Tuesday night, was asked during her interview if she had any special bond with any of the judges.  She indicated she felt like she had a special bond with Chris Powell who's in charge of the show "Extreme Makeover, Weight Loss Edition."   The photographers get up-close and personal and get to ask her about her family life.  She has an older 26 year old brother and each summer Miss Utah, her brother, and their parents travel around the U.S. to several baseball parks and watch Major League Baseball games. Her favorite team was the LA Dodgers.  Her favorite park you might think Chavez Revine being where the Dodgers play, but it wasn't.  Her favorite is the infamous Fenway Park in Boston.  Lots of history!
Photo by Rex Winterton

Photo by Rex Winterton

The photographers interview a few more contestants and discuss the lenses and photography equipment they will need for this event.  Dixie carries with her a Canon D70; and Rex his Nikon D300.  From past experience the only lenses they'd need would be a 17-85, and a 70-200, f 2.8.  The latter is by far their favorite lens.
Photo by Rex Winterton

After touring the "Miracle Mile" halls cluttered with people looking for exceptional deals, both Dixie and Rex figured it's time for a good old cheeseburger or maybe even a yogurt.  One of the sporting good shops found lured them inside by two girls dressed up as referees.  Inside the sporting good facility they had four professional athletes signing photos and letting people like themselves take their own pictures.  There on location was the Hall of Famer for the Chicago Bears, Gale Sayers.  On the other side of the store were three boxers of years gone by.  Ernie Shavers, Ken Norton, and Leon Spinks.  Later that evening there was also another NBA former player that dropped by.  The great Dennis Rodman and his two body guards. 
Photo by Rex Winterton

It's now time for the big production.  The show starts at 5:30 PM, with the doors opening at 4pm. 
Excitement fills the air.  Ladies in beautiful evening gowns flowing with sashes and diamonds.  Men wearing all different colored tuxedo's and also a few others in regular slacks and long sleeved shirts.  There were also an army of State's winners of the Miss Teen Pageants.

Chris Harrison (The Bachelor) and Brooke Burke (Dancing with the Stars)  were the hosts of the Saturday night performance.

The Miss America Organization gives hundreds of thousands of dollars each year in scholarships.  The new Miss America will receive a $50,000 scholarship to the college of her choice, and after she is crowned can expect to leave right after her press interviews early Sunday.  She will fly to New York City, to be on Good Morning America, on Monday.  She has appearances all over the country including other shows in New York, and the Super Bowl 46 in Indianapolis.

Photo by Rex Winterton

As for the photographers, they wrap up another great season with the Miss America Organization.  Next year will be another year and maybe another camera and another lens.  You know photographers...they like to dream too.


Anonymous said...

Umm Hot!

Cindy Larkin said...

Great article Rex! I can't even imagine how nervous I'd be to shoot such an exciting event! You two did a great job! I want to come with you next time :)

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