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Utah women rate the relevance of pageants

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 Utah) - Dozens of Utah women are clamoring for the crown at this week's Miss Utah Pageant, despite their critics.
Miss Utah 2013 Kara Arnold
Miss Utah 2013 Kara Arnold
SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 Utah) - Dozens of Utah women are clamoring for the crown at this week's Miss Utah Pageant, despite their critics.

After Miss Utah USA Marissa Powell, botched an on-stage question at The Miss USA pageant, contestants everywhere are under fire. In fact, some say Powell's jumbled answer is proof that pageants are irrelevant.

Teresa Weyer is one of many women ABC 4 Utah talked with.  She said pageants are not necessary in today's world. "When I was younger that was a way to prove, to get scholarships, but women do that now every day."

However, Miss Utah America, Kara Arnold says pageants are a force for good. "Pageants are very relevant in creating young women that can be power forces in our community," she said.

Of the 44 women competing in Miss Utah one will go on to compete at Miss America.  There she'll promote education and community service. Something the pageant's contestants know all about.  In the last year they have logged 500 thousand hours of community service and raised more than 11 million dollars for Utah charities.

However, Critics say it's not enough.  Some are calling on women to promote advanced causes like equality in the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community, healthcare, and immigration reform.

Arnold says pageant contestants will naturally evolve to promote those causes in no time at all.  "I think we will start seeing more of these causes and issues that are very prominent in our society come out in these platforms that these girls are choosing."

To her, that is what matters the most.

"We can make a difference," she said.  "That is what this pageant is about."

Miss Utah will be crowned this Saturday night at the Capitol Theatre. For more information click here.


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