Cable network follows local Miss Georgia contestant - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Cable network follows local Miss Georgia contestant

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June 25, 2005

Columbus- 53 young women from across the state of Georgia converged on Columbus for the Miss Georgia pageant. It's been a week full of events leading up to the top ten finalist who competed for the title Saturday.

For one Southwest Georgia contestant, this will be an experience she will never forget.

"I've competed in pageants for two years or so, my biggest pageant to date besides this one was Miss Teen Georgia USA and so this is my biggest one since then," said Joy McCalla, Miss Thomasville.

For Joy, this pageant experience has been a little different.

"We were given the opportunity to send in video tapes and luckily I was one of the ones selected," said Joy.

The Learning Channel has followed Joy and two other girls for the several weeks leading up to the crowning. Eventually, they're putting together a two show documentary on the pageant experience.

"It's actually allowed me to have that extra uumph to practice. I'm like oh I have some cameras following me around I might want to be on par, I want to be exactly perfect, especially being on national television," said McCalla.

She's hoping to show that national audience that the myths about pageants simply aren't true.

"It's an awesome opportunity I think because a lot of people have a misconception based on who they think Miss Georgia is, who the contestants really are," said Joy.

She says those misconceptions have caused trouble. The Miss America contest still doesn't have a network sponsor and they're not sure when the contest will be held. Joy hopes documentaries like this will rekindle an interest in the show.

"Just to get people watching again. The face of pageants has changed in the last few years. We're not just the talented, kind of ugly girls. We're the smart girls and we're pretty and we have a lot to offer," said McCalla.

Joy will have a chance to show the nation what she offers when the documentary runs this fall on TLC. Producers say the show will run some time after the Miss America pageant.

Saturday night, Miss Monica Pang was crowned Miss Georgia. Kelly Bradshaw, Miss Costal Georgia of Albany was third runner up.

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