Sarah Watson crowned ‘Miss Vermont’

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(Host) This week, a decades-old tradition continued when the 2006 Miss Vermont Miss Vermont was crowned.

Even though it was her first pageant, Sarah Watson of Enosburg Falls was named the winner who will go to compete for the title of Miss America.

The 21-years-old nursing student is also an EMT and a licensed pilot.

She’s exactly the kind of contestant that organizers point to when they remind people that the Miss Vermont competition isn’t a beauty pageant from the old days.

The 12 contestants did go through the paces of swimsuit and evening gown competitions. But when it came to scoring, the judges put most of the emphasis on the talent and interview segments of the program.

Here are some of Sarah Watson’s impressions from the competition:

(Pageant Host) “And Miss Vermont’s National Sweetheart, Maggie Revilla, making Sarah Watson your Miss Vermont 2006”

(Watson) “I absolutely cannot believe it. I didn’t expect this at all. This has been a really big challenge for me. I’ve never been in an interview before. Interview is worth 30% of my final score. And I had a blast preparing for it, going over questions and .”

(Pageant official) “So we’re going to start with contestant number seven, Sarah Watson. Sarah, what is it like to be a pilot?”

(Watson) “What is it like to be a pilot? It’s the most exhilarating experience I can possibly think of. It takes um you have to divide your attention among different things when you’re “

(Watson afterwards) “The main goal for this pageant for everybody is to grow. Our director likes to say, you know, it’s important to step outside of your comfort zone. And that’s what this does for every single one of the young women who competed today. We’ve all grown.”

(Pageant official) “We are officially ready for the first portion of the talent competition.”

(Piano music)

(Watson) “I played a classical piano piece by a French composer, Claude Debussy. He wrote music during the Impressionist Period of art. And I like to think of him as an Impressionist composer, kind of painting pictures if you will, with music.”

(Piano music continues)

(Watson) “Before I learned about this organization, I was one of those skeptics. I wasn’t really sure what this was all about. You know, this isn’t just a pageant. It is a scholarship program. Women here are judged by their charisma, by their ability to articulate their beliefs and their ideas. They’re encouraged to talk about things that matter to them and to go out into their communities and the world and make a difference. And I think that is always relevant.”

(Piano music finishes to applause)

(Host) The twelve contestants were awarded more than $15,000 in scholarships and prize money in Sunday’s competition.

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