A glittery shitstorm is going down in Delaware, where a beauty queen was essentially fired because she’s geriatric — at 24.
On June 14, Amanda Longacre won the title of Miss Delaware which included scholarships, a year long contract for appearances under the title and a run at the Miss America crown in September. Instead, Delaware pageant officials crowned the first runner-up, Miss Wilmington Brittany Lewis, who is also 24, on Thursday. According to the Miss America Organization, this is how one 24-year-old wins and the other almost 24-year-old loses: contestants must be 17-24 years old and they can’t turn 25 before December 31. Longacre’s birthday is on October 22 when she’ll be 25, so she was disqualified. Lewis is 23 right now and will be 24 on her birthday, July 21.
In another step of awkwardness, the Miss Delaware team publicly announced the dismissal of Longacre at the crowning of Lewis on Thursday. Then their legal counsel and board member Elizabeth Soucek, who was a Miss Delaware runner up herself back in 2007, told press there could be no questions about the booted queen, only about the new one because the queen is dead and, you know, long live the queen.
Meanwhile, Longacre is “heart-broken” and broke down in tears during a Today Show interview as she discussed the situation. She told News Journal that a state contest official recruited her to compete in the Miss Pike Creek and Miss Delaware competitions. During the process, the representative reviewed her birth certificate and license, all of which contain her birthdate, and told her she was eligible.
"I competed on the local and state level and even signed my national contract and it was notarized and no one said anything to me and it was all notarized with my birthday on the contract," she said. "I gave them all the proper documents."
Then on Tuesday her world fell apart. Pageant officials told her she was too old to be their queen, which meant relinquishing $11,000 in scholarships from all of her competitions. Longacre had already suspended a master’s degree in social work to compete to serve her year as Miss Delaware. But there might be a light at the end of the runway.
Longacre’s lawyered up, hiring Mark Billion of Wilmington to her her money and dignity back.
"We believe there's a breach of contract here," Billion said. "Not only did we not get the courtesy of a response," he said, "we haven't gotten anything from them saying she is disqualified."
Image via Today.