The 2018 Miss Kentucky will be crowed in Lexington on June 30.
Thirty-one contestants will compete for the title in Lexington, and then will go on to the larger Miss America pageant scheduled for Sept. 10 in Atlantic City.
The winner of Miss Kentucky will receive an academic scholarship which was worth $16,000 in 2017 and a car with which to travel throughout Kentucky for the year after she wins.
Contestants from throughout the state, who have won their local preliminaries, will arrive early in the week to begin pageant activities, which include volunteering at God’s Pantry Food Bank and visiting University of Kentucky football facilities.
The young women begin the real pageant with a behind the scenes one-on-one interview with a panel of six Miss Kentucky judges, then will compete on stage through two rounds before the final 10 young women are selected for the last round.
Miss America 2000, Heather Renee French Henry, will be present at the finals to speak and take pictures, according to Ashley Anderson, current president of the Miss Kentucky Scholarship Organization and a former Miss Kentucky competitor.
The young women will compete on stage in swimsuits and evening wear, as well as performing talent and answering a question posed to them by judges.
The national Miss America pageant announced it will no longer require contestants to wear swimsuits in competition, and that the evening wear portion will be changed from formal gowns to clothing that makes contestants feel confident.
Although the Miss Kentucky pageant will include a swimsuit competition this year, it will be eliminated for the 2019 competition in keeping with Miss America. Anderson said the national organization will give the states new areas of competition, where the women are judged more on personality and commitment to social issues than their looks.
“A lot of times I know pageants get a bad rap because people don’t understand girls that get on stage and compete, but it’s really much more than that,” Anderson said. “I think that every girl should do at least one pageant in her life.”
If you go
2018 Miss Kentucky pageant
When: 7 p.m. for preliminary rounds on June 28 and 29; 6 p.m. for final round on June 30
Where: Singletary Center for the Arts, University of Kentucky
Cost: $35 for preliminary rounds; $50 for final round.