Last week, Monday was the perfect example of the stamina necessary to be a Miss State. I was up in the morning to work on some photo editing, then the gym at 12:00, then dance rehearsal to finish my Miss America talent, back to the gym just to shower because I didn't have time to go home, then to Actor's Connection for my hosting class, left early and ran to BB King in Times Square for Rockers on Broadway! Mind you, I had a different outfit for each of those things, slung around my shoulders while traveling on the subway. Oh NY... :)
Rockers on Broadway was a great event, bringing awareness and fundraising to Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. It was an amazing cabaret night - lots of dancing - lots of fun! I met some great people and spent the evening at Fred Schneider from the B52s. Thanks to Michelle Kinney (former Miss Thousand Islands) for the introduction to the event and producer, Cori Gardner!
On Friday, I went to Cohen Children's Hospital on Long Island where I was able to have a really great and intimate conversation with a few of the patients. It was a small group, but this allowed us to really get to know each other. Two girls talked about their struggles with eating disorders and how they are bullied as a result. They said they feel great pressure from the media and in turn have no role models. "May I offer you a role model?" I asked. And proceeded to tell them about Kirsten Haglund who as Miss America advocated for eating disorder awareness and treatment during her year, but even more importantly, has continued that work with the Kirsten Haglund Foundation in the two years since. I gave them Kirsten's website and her slogan, "Love your body, Rock the world" You could just see the difference it made with these two girls specifically. I think that's something so important about the Miss America Organization. We create our own network of references and support. If there is a story about human trafficking on the news, I think of Miss Michigan or Miss DC 08; if there is a story about arts education I think of Miss Greater NYC; a story about eating disorders, Kirsten; or self-confidence and bullying, Miss Virginia; domestic violence/dating violence, Ashley in IN or Miss IN. Collectively, we are a POWERFUL group of women with so many resources at hand.
And then it was time for the big party! Ronnie Kroell (Bravo's Make Me A Supermodel) and his great team of volunteers put on such a wonderful evening at La Pomme Nightclub in NYC. Not only was he concerned with throwing a great party, but he put so much heart into the evening, organizing speakers who would facilitate great discussions throughout the night. I haven't received all the pics yet, but I did find a few on Facebook. Thank you to all who attended and the Miss New York Board of Directors and volunteers who were there to help the night run smoothly. It was wonderful to look out as I spoke an actually only know about 1/10th of the people there. So many people were there who just believed in my message of equality and had faith in the power of collaboration, that we can all, unified, make a difference. Plus we raised over $2000 for the Miss New York Organization and the Children's Miracle Network!! Sweet!!
Many more photos on my November Events Photo Gallery