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Updated on July 31, 2017 at 3:36 PM Posted on July 31, 2017 at 1:27 PM
Gallery: Miss Michigan's Outstanding Teen Pageant finale 2017
By Justine McGuire email@example.com
ORLANDO, FL - Miss Michigan's Outstanding Teen Katie Preston was the first to be named to the top 12 at the 2017 Miss America's Outstanding Teen pageant on Saturday.
Preston later earned the honor of fourth runner up after impressing the judges with her evening wear, onstage question, fitness and lifestyle, and vocal talent.
The fourth runner up receives a scholarship of $2,000. Preston also won a preliminary talent award, the top vocalist award, and nine full-ride scholarships.
"I also left with friends and memories that will last a lifetime," Preston said in a public Facebook post. "Thank you so much everyone who supported me through this journey. Truly feel like the luckiest girl in the world."
Preston, 17, of Bridgman, was unavailable for comment by press time as she traveled for vacation.
Miss America's Outstanding Teen 2018 is Miss Alabama's Outstanding Teen Jessica Baeder. She received a $30,000 scholarship, along with other awards.
Here's the top five:
Miss America's Outstanding Teen 2018: Miss Alabama's Outstanding Teen 2017 Jessica Baeder ($30,000)
First runner up: Miss Georgia's Outstanding Teen 2017 Annie Swan ($10,000)
Second runner up: Miss Maryland's Outstanding Teen 2017 Chloe Wildman ($7,500)
Third runner up: Miss Texas' Outstanding Teen 2017 Stephanie Wendt ($5,000)
Fourth runner up: Miss Michigan's Outstanding Teen 2017 Katie Preston ($2,000)
Rounding out the top 12 were (in no particular order):
Miss Oklahoma's Outstanding Teen 2017 Evelyn Smith
Miss Arkansas' Outstanding Teen 2017 Aubrey Elizabeth Reed
Miss Florida's Outstanding Teen 2017 Reece Weaver
Miss West Virginia's Outstanding Teen 2017 Sabrina Harrison
Miss Iowa's Outstanding Teen 2017 Lydia Fisher
Miss Indiana's Outstanding Teen 2017 Ellie Barmes
Miss Minnesota's Outstanding Teen 2017 Emily Schumaker
The Miss America's Outstanding Teen pageant began on Tuesday, July 25, at Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla. Preliminaries took place Tuesday-Thursday. Finals were on Saturday, July 29.
Preston showed off her talent for singing on Thursday, and was rewarded with a preliminary talent award, which is a $500 scholarship. She performed "Think of Me" from Phantom of the Opera again on Saturday.
"It was tough competition last night," said Shelley Taylor, Miss Michigan Organization executive director, on Friday. "But she's got a fabulous voice."
Miss Michigan Heather Kendrick was also in Orlando to support Preston as she competed against 51 other titleholders. Hendrick will compete for the title of Miss America in September in Atlantic City, N.J.
Contestants had a break from competition on Friday, July 28, as they participated in a danceathon to raise money for Children's Miracle Network, which is the Miss America Organization's national charity.
Preston competed as Miss Sunset Coast's Outstanding Teen during the Miss Michigan's Outstanding Teen pageant during June in Muskegon where she was crowned. Preston won a preliminary talent award for her vocal performance at that pageant as well.
She won a total of $1,450 in scholarships at the statewide pageant.
Preston's personal platform during her reign as Miss Michigan's Outstanding Teen is "Youth Coping with Anxiety." She works with the be nice. organization to spread her message.
Miss America's Outstanding Teen was founded in 2005. Miss Michigan's Outstanding Teen has never been crowned at the national pageant, which takes place in Orlando, Fla.
Michigan has had two first runner up finishes: Miss Michigan's Outstanding Teen 2011 Marissa Cowans and Miss Michigan's Outstanding Teen 2006 Nina Davuluri. Cowans continues to compete in pageants, and is the reigning Miss Lighthouse Coast 2017. Davuluri went on to become Miss America 2014, competing as Miss New York 2013.
Former Miss America's Outstanding Teens are:
Miss America's Outstanding Teen 2017 Nicole Jia (Oklahoma)
Miss America's Outstanding Teen 2016 Allie Nault (New Hampshire)
Miss America's Outstanding Teen 2015 Olivia McMillan (Georgia)
Miss America's Outstanding Teen 2014 Leah Sykes (Florida)
Miss America's Outstanding Teen 2013 Rachel Wyatt (South Carolina)
Miss America's Outstanding Teen 2012 Elizabeth Fechtel (Florida)
Miss America's Outstanding Teen 2011 Lacey Russ (Oklahoma)
Miss America's Outstanding Teen 2010 Jeanette Morelan (Wisconsin)
Miss America's Outstanding Teen 2009 Taylor Fitch (South Carolina)
Miss America's Outstanding Teen 2008 Caitlin Brunell (Virginia)
Miss America's Outstanding Teen 2007 Maria DeSantis (New York)
Miss America's Outstanding Teen 2006 Meghan Miller (Texas)
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