The Miss Arizona Pageant Leads to Miss America

You Could Be the Next Miss Arizona

Miss Arizona Pageant
••• Miss Arizona Pageant. Judy Hedding

There are young women who imagine themselves as Olympic athletes. There are others who dream of starring in a Broadway musical. And then there are those whose goal is to accept the Miss America crown. How does it happen? Whom do you call to get in the pageant?

The first step is a local competition in a community within Arizona. The winners of these local competitions then compete for Miss Arizona. Miss Arizona goes on to the Miss America Pageant.

Simple, eh? Well, besides looking the part, it also takes a great deal of hard work to compete for and win the title of Miss Arizona.

How the Miss Arizona Pageant Works

Local and state pageants throughout the country are run under the same guidelines, which change from time to time. There are various phases of competition for the Miss Arizona Pageant. For the Preliminaries:

  • Interview - 25% of final score. Each Miss Arizona contestant has an interview with the panel of judges.
  • Talent - 35% of final score. Live, on-stage talent, 2 minutes.
  • Evening wear - 20% of score. Includes an on-stage question.
  • Lifestyle and Fitness in Swimsuit - 15% of score.
  • During preliminaries, the final 5% will come from an over-all evaluation of the Miss Arizona contestant's on stage response to question(s).

During the final night competition,

  • the composite score from the preliminary competitions is worth 30% of the final score
  • Talent - 30%
  • Evening Wear - 20%
  • Lifestyle and Fitness in Swimsuit - 20%

Then, the top five finalists are named. Each judge ranks the top five in the order that he or she believes the contestants should finish. The totals on those judges' ballots determine the winner and the new Miss Arizona.

Each competitor chooses her own personal platform of community service - a chance to make a positive impact on America's youth.

Three "Quality of Life" scholarships are awarded to contestants for their personal platform service work.

The Miss Arizona Pageant concentrates on talent, public speaking, community service, and physical fitness. According to Stephen Rich of the Miss Arizona Scholarship Foundation, "interested young women can work on all of these areas any time in their lives."

Who Can Compete for the Miss Arizona Title

Scholarships are awarded at each level of competition. The amounts of the awards will vary by pageant. Scholarships are for education-related expenses and are paid directly to the school or reimbursed to the contestant upon submission of paid receipts.

To compete, a young woman must:

  • Be between 17 and 24 years of age.
  • Be a female, never married, no children.
  • Be a United States citizen.
  • Be a resident of Arizona for at least six months.
  • Be a high school graduate.
  • Meet residency requirements for competing in a certain town and state.
  • Meet character criteria as set forth by the Miss America Organization.
  • Be in reasonably good health to meet the job requirements.
  • Be able to meet the time commitment and job responsibilities as set forth by the local program in which she competes.

There are no entry fees.

Pageants try to keep contestant costs minimal; contestants are encouraged to wear wardrobe outfits they already have. Local directors can discuss details and what they might be able to provide or borrow.

A young woman may compete in local and state competitions more than once, as long as she meets the age and other requirements; however, she can compete for the Miss America title only once.

Details About The Next Miss Arizona Pageant

The finals of the Miss Arizona competition are held in June each year. Here are this year's details:

Date: June 23 - 25, 2016
Location: Mesa Arts Center

Preliminary competitions will take place on June 23 and 24, with the final competition and naming of the new Miss Arizona on June 25.

Tickets usually go on sale in May. You can purchase tickets online. Credit cards are accepted and special three-night packages are available.

Further information about the pageant and this year’s contestants is available on the organization website at

All dates, times, prices and offerings are subject to change without notice.