Local contestants pick up honors at state pageants

By MIKE CHAIKEN

EDITIONS EDITOR

Although the local contestants did not win Miss Connecticut or Miss Connecticut’s Outstanding Teen pageants this weekend, they did earn accolades at the event in Hartford’s Connecticut Convention Cente.

In the Miss Connecticut’s Outstanding Teen pageant held Saturday afternoon, Miss Plantsville’s Outstanding Teen Taylor Plourd of Bristol was the third runner-up to the eventual winner, Miss Naugatuck Valley Brooke Cyr. Plourd also was awarded Miss Congeniality.

Miss Forestville’s Outstanding Teen Cassandra Lechner won the overall talent award. She also placed in the top 10.

In the Miss Connecticut contest, which was won by Eliza Kanner Saturday night after preliminaries on Friday, Miss Southington Bridget Oei was third runner-up. Miss Bristol Gina Salvatore reached the top 10.

Miss Forestville Erika Farrell received the Miss Congeniality award. She also received Miss America Academic Award scholarship.

Also competing from the area were Miss Southington’s Outstanding Teen Ava Onofreo and Miss Bristol’s Outstanding Teen Victoria Kilbourne.

“It’s incredible,” said the new Miss Connecticut’s Outstanding Teen Brooke Cyr. “I’m still trying to process it.”

“It was incredible to be crowned by Alyssa Taglia (Miss Connecticut 2016),” said the new Miss Connecticut Eliza Lynne Kanner. “She has been my mentor for the past 10 years.”

“It was an incredible moment,” said Kanner.

PHOTOS by MIKE CHAIKEN

Miss Bristol’s Outstanding Teen Victoria Kilbourne walks the stage in her evening gown.

Miss Forestville Erika Farrell sings in Friday’s preliminary competition for Miss Connecticut.

Miss Plantsville’s Outstanding Teen Taylor Plourd, right, hugs Miss Mountain Laurel’s Outstanding Teen Ariana Puglisi after learning she reached the top 10 of the Miss Connecticut’s Outstanding Teen Pageant. Plourd finished as third runner-up in the pageant, which was won by Brooke Cyr of Waterbury. At the left is Miss Forestville’s Outstanding Teen Cassandra Lechner.

Miss Bristol Gina Salvatore sings in the Miss Connecticut finals Saturday.

Bridget Oei, Miss Southington, finishes her performance on the piano at the Miss Connecticut Scholarship Pageant finals on Saturday. Oei finished third runner-up.

Miss Forestville’s Outstanding Teen Cassandra Lechner at the Miss Connecticut Outstanding Teen pageant Saturday.

Miss Southington’s Outstanding Teen Ava Onofreo competes in the evening gown category.

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