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American Coed Pageant 2008

Silver Ladies: (Back L-R) Miss American Coed Megan Padilla, Miss American Junior Teen Chi Chi Do-Nguyen, Miss American Preteen Raven Delk and Miss American Teen Madeline Sapp are joined by Miss American Princess Abigale Evans (Front L) and Miss American Sweetheart Hailey Stubenhofer (Front R) as the 2008 American Coed Pageants Queens.

From the moment the contestants and their families arrived at the 25th annual Miss American Coed National pageant, everyone could feel excitement in the air. It was certainly going to be a very different experience from previous years.

The 25th Anniversary Kickoff Celebration and Dance Party featured a stunning array of silver, black and white, with pictures of the national queens’ courts from ACP’s first 25 years serving as beautiful centerpieces and reminders of how Coed has helped make young girls’ dreams come true for a quarter of a century. Families arrived at the Hilton Resort at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, days before the official pageant registration was scheduled to begin on November 24. Located at Disney, the Hilton Resort allowed families to come together for a Disney family vacation and some extra excitement prior to the fun and competition of pageant week.

The first day allowed the contestants to meet one another in person, and there was no denying the joyous atmosphere. For the first time ever, ACP hosted the kickoff event before orientation. Four Disney princesses—Cinderella, Pocahontas, Belle and Jasmine—joined the contestants for photo opportunities and autograph signings. It was a special evening and the perfect beginning for a busy and fun filled week to follow. After the Disney princesses left, the dance floor opened and Coed’s contestants danced the night away. After spending a day at the Magic Kingdom, the girls began the optional on-stage competitions, which included talent, speech, modeling, acting and cheerleading. Other optional competitions were offered in photogenic, volunteer service, academic achievement, scrapbook, “Thank you” letter and family art contest categories.

Miss American Coed Princess Abigale Evans

Talent Show: Miss American Princess Abigale Evans performs a colorful dance routine during the talent portion of her competition.


The Coed family brought many pageant families from all over the country together to celebrate and enjoy a traditional Thanksgiving buffet dinner. In addition, many families expressed their thanks to the American Coed pageant staff for having a pageant system that encourages the girls to be themselves, while helping them build self-esteem and gain self-confidence. After the turkey dinner, the fourth annual Ms. and Mr. American Coed Pageant and the second annual American Coed Baby Pageant were held. The Mr., Ms. and Baby competitions are held as a fundraiser for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation to give all pageant family members the opportunity to compete on stage.

Nikki Polenski was named Ms. American Coed while the titles of Ms. American Coed Woman and Ms. American Coed Classic Woman went to Jennifer Hribar and Sam Rucki, respectively. Alexis Eichelberger received the honor of American Coed Baby, for girls and boys newborn to three years, and Ali Elhage, from the four- to 12-year old group, was named Master American Coed. Mr. American Coed honors went to Tyler Bush while Walter Baker won the Mr. American Coed Gent title.

During the week, there were many rehearsals as all age divisions learned two separate dance numbers. Each age division danced a patriotic Coed signature number to open the optional competitions results program. The girls performed the songs “Anywhere USA,” “Kids in America” and “Sing for You America,” while in between the winners of the optional contests were announced and the Miss Victory titles were awarded.

Virginia’s Rebecca Lloyd took the Miss American Coed Victory title, and was joined by Miss American Teen Victory Brandi George, Miss American Junior Teen Victory Katelynne Cox, Miss American Preteen Victory Mycaela Bryant, Miss American Sweetheart Victory Kaylea Bixler and Miss American Princess Ava Mandoli.

The girls kept the energy high during the week while practicing to party themed songs in celebration of ACP’s 25th Anniversary. These numbers, performed at the pageant finals on Saturday, included Kool and the Gang’s “Celebrate Good Times”—also the main theme of the American Coed Pageant—Hannah Montana’s “Pumpin’ Up the Party” and a touching finale by the Coed age division contestants to “Celebrate the Future Hand in Hand.” It was a true celebration of the time, effort and energy given to American Coed by its contestants, pageant families, staff and state and national directors over the past 25 years.


American Girls Speak Out

Speaking Out: (L) Miss American Junior Teen Chi Chi Do-Nguyen competes in the speech portion of her competition. Lady In Red: (C) Megan Padilla models her favorite dress en route to being crowned Miss American Coed. American Girl: (R) Miss American Teen Madeline Sapp participates in one of the American Coed Pageants’ patriotic performances.


The contestants, despite their packed pageant schedules, also had time to participate in a favorite event—the annual cookie party and gift exchange. The girls got to be silly, have fun together and know one another a little better. After their interviews, the girls were encouraged to go to yet another party to meet American Coed Pageants President Carolyn Hawkins and her daughter Patty, the National Director. Contestants and their parents had time to chat, take photos and have cookies and punch with the Hawkins during their annual open house.

Finally, the crowning day arrived for each age division, providing a very exciting conclusion for everyone involved. Through diligence and ambition, each girl was already a winner in every sense of the word. Six outstanding young women walked away with the coveted crowns and prestigious overall titles.

Washington’s Megan Padilla was crowned Miss American Coed, accompanied by Miss American Teen Madeline Sapp, Miss American Junior Teen Chi Chi Do-Nguyen, Miss American Preteen Raven Delk, Miss American Sweetheart Hailey Stubenhofer and Miss American Princess Abigale Evans.


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