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Miss New York Nina Davuluri, center, reacts after being named Miss America 2014 pageant as Miss California Crystal Lee, left, and Miss America 2013 Mallory Hagan celebrate with her, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)
Miss New York Nina Davuluri, front, is crowned as Miss America 2014 by Miss America 2013 Mallory Hagan, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Mel Evans) Miss New York Nina Davuluri is crowned as Miss America 2014 by Miss America 2013 Mallory Hagan Sunday in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Mel Evans) Miss New York Nina Davuluri, front, is crowned as Miss America 2014 by Miss America 2013 Mallory Hagan, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Mel Evans) Miss New York Nina Davuluri walks down the runway after winning the the Miss America 2014 pageant, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Mel Evans) Miss Florida Myrrhanda Jones wears a swimsuit during the lifestyle competition during the Miss America 2014 pageant, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Mel Evans) Miss Kansas Theresa Vail shows her bathing suit during the lifestyle competition during the Miss America 2014 pageant, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) Miss Nevada Diana Sweeney holds up her shoe during the Miss America Shoe Parade at the Atlantic City boardwalk, Saturday, Sept. 14, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez,) Miss Texas Ivana Hall gestures the longhorns with her fingers during the Miss America 2014 pageant, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Mel Evans) Miss Connecticut Kaitlyn Tarpey, right, hugs Miss Georgia Carly Mathis during the Miss America 2014 pageant, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Mel Evans) Contestants walk on the runway during the Miss America 2014 pageant, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) Contestants walk on the runway during the Miss America 2014 pageant, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Mel Evans) Former Miss New Jersey Ashleigh Udalovas walks on the stage before the start of the Miss America 2014 pageant, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Mel Evans) Former Miss New Jersey Ashleigh Udalovas walks on the stage before the start of the Miss America 2014 pageant, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Mel Evans) Miss America pageant alumni Miss South Dakota Calista Kirby, left, and Miss Rhode Island Kelsey Fournier take a photograph of themselves with a phone before the Miss America 2014 pageant, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. The former misses participated in last year's contest in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) Miss Puerto Rico Collegiate Shaina Millan waits in the lobby of Boardwalk Hall before the Miss America 2014 pageant, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) Miss America pageant alumni, from left, Miss Nebraska Mariah Cook, Miss Nevada Randi Sundquist, Miss Alabama Anna Laura Bryan, and Miss South Dakota Calista Kirby pose for a photograph before the Miss America 2014 pageant, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. The former misses participated in last year's contest in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) Miss New Hampshire Samantha Russo dances while walking with other contestants during the Miss America 2014 pageant, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) A tattoo is seen on the neck of Miss America 2013 Mallory Hagan during the Miss America 2014 pageant, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) Miss New York Nina Davuluri, center, reacts after being named Miss America 2014 pageant as Miss California Crystal Lee, left, and Miss America 2013 Mallory Hagan celebrate with her, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013, in Atlantic City, N.J. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

Miss N.Y. crowned 2014 Miss America


ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — Nina Davuluri became the first contestant of Indian heritage and the second consecutive contestant from New York to win the Miss America pageant Sunday night.

Davuluri, 24, won the title as the nationally televised pageant returned home to Atlantic City.

She succeeds another Miss New York, Mallory Hagan, whose tenure was cut short when the pageant moved back to Atlantic City after a six-year stint in Las Vegas, where winners were chosen in January.

Davuluri performed a classical Bollywood fusion dance for her talent competition.

After the traditional frolic in the Atlantic City surf Monday morning, she will head to the scene of a devastating boardwalk fire in the New Jersey communities of Seaside park and Seaside Heights on Monday afternoon.

The pageant had pitted 53 contestants — one from each state, plus the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands — in swimsuit, evening gown, talent and interview competitions.

“This is where we belong,” Sam Haskell, CEO of the Miss America Organization, told The Associated Press. “This is the home of Miss America, and this is where we’re going to stay.”

Much attention had been given to Miss Kansas, Theresa Vail, who is believed to be the first Miss America contestant to openly display tattoos. She has the Serenity Prayer on her rib cage and a military insignia on the back of a shoulder. While other contestants wore glamorous costumes and elaborately decorated footwear during Saturday night’s “show-us-your-shoes” parade on the Boardwalk, Vail wore camouflage gear and Army boots.

In a Twitter message Sunday, Vail wrote: “Win or not tonight, I have accomplished what I set out to do. I have empowered women. I have opened eyes.”

Vail made it to the Top 10 and won a nationwide voters’ choice award propelling her into the semi-finals.

Another noteworthy contestant was Miss Florida, Myrrhanda Jones, who made it into the top 5 while wearing a bejeweled knee brace. She tore ligaments in her knee while rehearsing her baton twirling routine on Thursday. Sunday night, she performed the routine flawlessly.

The pageant started in Atlantic City as a way to extend the summer tourism season for an extra weekend.



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