Elle Smith radiates and shines as Miss USA 2021
Miss USA descended upon the River Spirit Casino Resort in celebration of the 70th Platinum Anniversary of the Miss USA Pageant. As the #pageantryreimagined event commenced under the new directorship of Miss USA 2008, Crystle Stewart, and her team, the 2021 edition of Miss USA was as brilliant as its platinum namesake.
The 51 Miss USA state delegates, all promoting their personal cause and state pride, had spent their time in Tulsa, Oklahoma, visiting the historical sites such as the Greenwood District, enjoying the local cuisine, all the while competing in the preliminary competitions of Miss USA.
Miss USA 2021 exploded onto the stage and television screens with a high-octane opening production featuring the contestants dressed in black unitards serenaded by multi-talented artist Ja Rule. As the crowd rose to its feet, the excitement of Miss USA commenced as the Miss USA state representatives entered the stage for the announcement of the Top 16 finalists who would continue the quest for the crown: North Dakota (Caitlyn Vogel), Maryland (Layilah Nasser), Utah (Jessikate Riley), Nebraska (Erika Etzelmiller), North Carolina (Madison Bryant), Illinois (Sydni Bennett), Louisiana (Tanya Crowe), Mississippi (Bailey Anderson), Tennessee (Elizabeth Pistole), Kentucky (Elle Smith), Kansas (Gracie Hunt), Florida (Ashley Carino), Virginia (Christina Thompson), South Carolina (Marley Stokes), Texas (Victoria Hinojosa), and South Dakota (Caroline Pettey). The stage was set for Miss USA 2021.
In the new format of #pageantryreimagined, all of the sixteen Miss USA finalists would compete onstage within Swimwear and Evening Gown as the Miss USA judges winnowed the field to a final eight delegates: Florida, Maryland, Illinois, South Carolina, Texas, Kentucky, North Carolina, and North Dakota.
Miss USA 2021 incorporated a new twist into the final presentations with a surprising round table discussion of newsworthy current events and personal beliefs. The discussion format featured two groups of four delegates speaking on a variety of subjects, reminiscent of The View. As the group discussion concluded, each delegate then answered a final question as presented by one of the Miss USA judges.
While the judges tallied their final decisions, the eight Miss USA 2021 contestants took the stage in their Final Look runway presentation. With all semi-finalists on-stage, the crowd grew louder and more excited with each proclamation: 4th Place Miss Illinois USA, 3rd Place Miss Florida USA, 2nd Place Miss North Dakota USA. Seven women stood center stage and only one would hear her name as Miss USA 2021. Above a cacophony of screams and applause, Miss Kentucky USA Elle Smith was declared Miss USA 2021. Miss USA 2021 had lived up to the #pageantryreimagined declaration and had truly shined on its very own Platinum anniversary.
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