It should not have been a surprise to anyone that Alyssa Beasley, Miss Southeast Georgia, was crowned Miss Georgia 2017 Saturday night at the RiverCenter for the Performing Arts.
After all, she had already captured first place in swimsuit, talent and evening wear, not an easy feat to accomplish.
“But it doesn’t always work like that,” she said Sunday morning.
The 19-year-old Kennesaw State University student from Brunswick, Ga. said it was “incredible” to hear her name called out.
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“If someone had said a couple of years ago that I would one day be wearing this crown, that I would be Miss Georgia, I would have thought they were kidding,” she said.
As for the pageant, Beasley said, “I knew I had prepared to the best of my ability and let the rest stay in God’s hands.”
Beasley will receive $17,500 in scholarship awards and will compete as Georgia’s representative in the 2017 Miss America pageant in Atlantic City this fall.
She said competing in pageants is something which has given her confidence she did not have when she was younger.
It was the second time Beasley competed in the Miss Georgia pageant, having competed in 2016 as Miss Golden Isles and finishing as second runner-up. Beasley won the talent competition that year, as well, dancing while a leg fracture was healing.
This year, she won the talent competition with a lyrical dance performed to the song “When Your Feet Don’t Touch the Ground.”
“It is from my favorite Broadway show ‘Finding Neverland.’ It was covered by Ellie Goulding,” she said.
Having been in Columbus last year helped her to beat 53 other women this year.
“I knew what to expect. I was more comfortable,” she said.
She is the daughter of Craig Beasley, an engineer with AT&T, and Paula Dell-Beasley who operates a dance competition studio. She has a younger sister Hailey.
Her longtime dream was to be a gymnast at the University of Georgia. “I used to live gymnastics,” she said.
But a rash of injuries squashed her hopes and she began to concentrate more on dance, something she had been involved with since she was a small child.
Beasley considers her gymnastics instructor Angela Jones as one of her biggest inspirations and believes, as does Jones, that a person should strive to “do something good” every day.
Beasley, a lover of fried catfish and romantic comedies, hope to be a physical therapist one day and use dance as physical therapy.
Her platform is #RiseUp: Impact Through the Arts and she wants to be an advocate for increasing funds for arts education.
“I have a great passion for the arts especially dance,” she said. “ I want to help people understand the impact they can have, especially, on young children.”
Beasley said she is “humbled” to be Miss Georgia and is looking forward to the Miss America Pageant in Atlantic City, N.J. this September.
“I am nervous but also excited,” she said.
Beasley is also hoping to do many personal appearances around Georgia.
“I enjoy meeting people,” she said.
First runner-up in the Miss Georga Pageant was Miss Conyers Cherry Blossom Brooke Doss; second runner-up was Miss Atlanta Paula Smith; third runner-up was Miss Cobb County Chari Guzman; and fourth runner-up was Miss International City Sarah Deloach.
Deloach was awarded a $2,500 scholarship. Guzman was awarded a $3,500 scholarship. Smith was awarded a $5,000 scholarship. Doss was awarded a $7,500 scholarship. All other semifinalists received scholarships as well.
Reporter Scott Berson contributed to this report.
Meet your new Miss Georgia, Alyssa Beasley
Hometown: Brunswick, Ga.
Occupation: Student at Kennesaw State University
Major: Physical Therapy
Platform: #RiseUp: Impact Through the Arts
Won first place in swimsuit, talent and evening wear categories