Amanda Longacre won the Miss Delaware 2014 pageant two weeks ago, but had now been stripped of her crown, title and the scholarship money she won because pageant organizers say she is too old to compete. Longacre is 24.
At issue is an apparently overlooked requirement that Miss America pageant contestants must be 24 through December. Longacre will turn 25 in October, although not until after the Sept. 15 Miss America pageant in Atlantic City.
Longacre says she “signed her contract, with her age and birthday clearly stated, and a member of the board signed off on that contract on a local, state and national level,” NBC Philadelphia
“Carolyn Nelson, media relations coordinator for the Miss Delaware organization, confirms that that Longacre did nothing wrong and had accurately reported her birth date on applications.”
“Still, on Tuesday, she was notified by pageant officials that her age was an issue,” NBC reports. “She was told she will not able to compete in the Miss America Pageant next September and that she was being stripped of her title, all prizes associated with that title, as well as $11,000 in scholarship money … that was going to help her pursue her master's degree in social work.”
“Longacre competed twice without any issues regarding age or eligibility -- once was on the local level and again on the state level. Her birth certificate, license and social security card were provided and verified by the organization,” NBC reports.
“Longacre says she was told from the beginning that her age was not an issue, that as long as she was 24 while on the Miss America stage, she was good to go,” adds NBC.
Fearing a lawsuit, pageant officials aren’t speaking about how the snafu happened.
First runner-up Brittany Lewis was awarded the crown at a news conference Thursday night.