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Local pageant coach and contestants react to changes to Miss America Pageant

Local pageant coach and contestants react to changes to Miss America Pageant. (Photo:Cari Ward)

MT. MORRIS TOWNSHIP, MICH-- Cari Ward has been a pageant coach for the last eight years and before that she competed in the competitions.

She says when she heard that the Miss America Pageant would drop swimwear and change evening gown to outfit of choice she was surprised.

"Does swimsuit determine if you're a role model no, but it's just such a staple of the contest," said Ward.

One of her clients Isabella Gielniak holds the current title Miss Great Lakes Junior Teen 2017 says she's excited about the news and hopes to compete one day.

" I loved it right away. It gives other girls with my body type who don't have the typical pageant body a chance to fulfill their dreams of competing in Miss America."

Ward says her nine year old daughter Cassie also hopes to one day to compete in the Miss America Pageant and says a swimwuit doesn't define who she is, her confidence and personality does.

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