The preliminary competition for Miss New York USA had concluded, and I was excited to have some downtime before the evening festivities. Still at The Performing Arts Center at Purchase College, I waited with the other Miss contestants to board the buses, which would take us back to the host hotel, Crowne Plaza White Plains-Downtown. Upon arriving at the hotel, each hotel room was given a plain cheese pizza from Domino’s for the roommates to share. I was really full afterwards, but I wanted the pizza to be entirely gone; since there was not a refrigerator in our room, I didn’t want to put a slice of pizza in the trash, causing the room to smell. Also, I didn’t want to look for a place to dispose of it outside of the room, since we were only supposed to be in the halls going to and from pageant related programs.
We still had a couple hours until it was time for our actual dinner, since the Teen competition was currently taking place. My roommate and I spent time together and watched TV as 8PM approached for dinner and the dance party.
We were told that attire for the dance party varies; some contestants wear cocktail dresses and others wear pajamas. I wanted to be comfy but was not going to wear my pajamas. I put on a nice top, leggings, and adidas sneakers, then my roommate and I headed downstairs for dinner.
Dinner was a pasta bar with different types of pasta, sauce, and toppings. I had my pasta with tomato sauce and meatballs. As more contestants arrived, attire really did vary, including someone wearing an animal onesie. Dessert was an ice cream bar with pre-scooped chocolate or vanilla ice cream and an assortment of toppings. I had chocolate ice cream with M&M’s and chocolate sauce.
On the other side of the ballroom, near the dance floor, was the DJ. It was fun for a bit, but after a while, it felt like an awkward middle school dance. I was also really tired from a long day, so I went upstairs to my room and started getting ready for the next day.
The evening before, I struggled to blow out my hair straight, so it could be easily styled by the hair team. The curls I had from today’s competition had drooped, so my hair was straight. I showered wearing a shower cap then used the dry shampoo from my contestant goodie bag. I had never used dry shampoo before, so when I first sprayed it, I was surprised to look like a skunk with a white stripe in my hair. I brushed it through my hair, and it looked fine!
I stayed up until my chaperone came to my room for bed checks. I did not want my blanket to get pulled back if I were asleep. While waiting, I made sure that I was packed, except for items that I needed in the morning. Once we would leave our rooms for breakfast, we would not be returning. Tonight’s bed check was a bit different, because my chaperone brought my roommate and me our ballots for voting for Miss Congeniality. We filled out the ballot then went to bed.
I didn’t have to get up quite as early the next day, since the final competition for the Teens took place first. As the Miss contestants did today, the Teens needed to be at breakfast at 7AM the next morning, and the Miss contestants needed to be at breakfast at 7:30AM, as the Teens did on the day of the preliminary competition.
I went to bed feeling eager for the next day, but with the Miss competition beginning at a later competition time, I knew it would be an extra-long day.