By Tim Leeds
Havre High School junior Steph McLain will be in Orlando, Fla., in July to represent Montana in the Miss United States Teen 2001 pageant.
The pageant will be held July 12-22 in Bush Gardens in Orlando. McLain said they will be flying out of Great Falls on July 11.
McLain, daughter of Tracy and Steph McLain of Havre, said she is really excited to go to the pageant, but right now is concentrating on preparing for the pageant and finding sponsors for the trip.
She said 40 percent of the judging at the pageant is based on the interview, so she is working on honing her interview skills. She said she is doing a lot of work to keep up on current events for the interview.
Another category is the swimsuit competition, which she said is primarily judged on the physical condition of the contestant, so she is working out quite a bit to be in prime condition.
Other categories at the competition include formal wear, fashion wear and production numbers, McLain said. There is a category for the platform of the contestant, which has a special judge. McLain's platform is of empathy, just being nice to everyone, which she links to preventing events like the Columbine school shooting.
McLain said Montana is an at-large state in the competition, so she did not compete in a pageant to become the Montana contestant. She said she and 40 other applicants applied, and she was chosen by the panel of judges as the winner.
McLain said she might enter other contests like this later on, but she isn't completely sure.
"I haven't really decided yet," she said. "I think it just depends on how this goes."