By Mike Chaiken
Editions Editor WATERBURY— A pair of Jennifers will be representing the town of Southington for the Miss Connecticut Scholarship Pageant over the next year.
Jennifer Binversie, a student at the University of Hartford and Wisconsin native, is the new Miss Southington.
Jennifer Bukowski, a high school student from Bristol, is the new Miss Southington’s Outstanding Teen.
Seven contestants competed for the Miss title and four for the Teen at La Bella Vista in Waterbury Sunday. Contestants were judged on private interview, talent, lifestyle and fitness, onstage question, and evening gown in this preliminary for Miss Connecticut and Miss Connecticut’s Outstanding Teen. The winners of that pageant will go on to compete for Miss America and Miss America’s Outstanding Teen.
Binversie, who performed danced ballet for her talent, said after she was crowned, “It feels amazing (to win). This is my first pageant and I’m so thankful that I did so well.”
Bukowski, who was still wiping away the tears after the pageant was over, said, “It feels amazing.” Bukowski, who was competing in her first-ever pageant as well said, “I feel so proud of everyone who did this and I can’t believe they chose me. It was such a close competition, I had no idea.”
And as the year progresses, Binversie said, “I’m definitely looking forward to promoting my platform, the power of positive thinking and performing arts, as well as competing at the state level.”
Bukowski, who performed a piano solo for her talent, said she is looking forward to the next year. She is especially excited about going to Miss Connecticut’s Outstanding Teen competition.
The Miss Connecticut and Miss Connecticut’s Outstanding Teen finals will be June 28 at the Garde Arts Center in New London.
First runner-up for Miss Southington was Alexa Farrell.
Heather Kolodziej won the talent competition in the Miss competition and was selected overall Miss Congeniality.
Katie Kelly of Bristol was first runner-up for Miss Southington’s Outstanding Teen. She also won the teen talent award.
Also competing in the Miss event were Kimberly Szabo, Alexandra Giannelli, Courtney Ouellette, and Natascia Simone.
Additional contestants in the teen event were Jaymie Bianca and Alyssa Daly.
The last Miss Southington, Kaitlyn Tarpey, is the current Miss Connecticut and placed in the top 10 at Miss America last year. She and Tiana Dyson, the current Miss Connecticut’s Outstanding Teen, co-hosted the afternoon event.