Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Seton Foundation: Fashion Show

As Miss Greater New York 2013, I had booked many events into November. One of these was the Seton Foundation's Annual Fashion Show. I was very excited to attend, and turn it into my first official appearance as Miss Staten Island 2014!
The Seton Foundation for Learning is a not-for-profit agency, established 25 years ago to meet the needs of developmentally disabled children and their families in the Staten Island community. The event, which was held at Grand Oaks on Staten Island, featured a large group of models - including some of my Miss America Organization sisters! I was joined by Christina Moore (Miss Kings County 2013), Stephanie Accardo (Miss Richmond County 2014), Amanda Alicea (Miss Staten Island 2013), and Ashley Davis (Miss Staten Island's Outstanding Teen 2013)! Having attended this event previously as a guest, I was ready to experience the "model side" of things.
Hair and makeup was provided by In The Mixx and once we were all dolled up, we jumped into our outfits provided by Just B. Then it was show time! It was a lot of fun strutting down the runway with cameras flashing all around!
I want to thank Mike Pinto and Robert Santimauro for having me as a guest and model at this event. Congratulations on another enormous success! And to my fellow queens, thanks for another entertaining night. You're all wonderful!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Miss Staten Island 2014!

What an incredible feeling to be sitting down to write this post after having some time to let the shock subside.

Hello, everyone! My name is Jamie and I am your Miss Staten Island 2014! I am so looking forward to the year ahead, ready to make a difference with the power of the crown. Before I get into my plans, though, let me tell you a little bit about this year's pageant experience.

The Miss Staten Island Pageant has been a tradition for 48 years. It is where I began my Miss America Organization journey and, although I was very nervous, I was excited to return this year. I was the former Miss Staten Island 2012 and always knew that I wanted to return to represent my hometown, since it means so much to me. This previous title did cause me to put extra pressure on myself, though, and I worked even harder to prove to the judges that I could serve this community once again.

I have to mention that every time I go into a pageant, my focus is not only to "get that crown." I've always believed that it is truly about the experience you take away. After all, not everyone can win the title, but everyone can take away something great from the experience. I am so fortunate to have met some incredible young women through the Miss America Organization and the Miss Staten Island Pageant this year was no exception. I can honestly say that this was one of the most intelligent, philanthropic, dedicated and kind-hearted group of contestants this pageant has ever seen. I am fortunate to have met them and competed with them because I know have some new, wonderful friends.

The day of the pageant, I felt prepared, but I knew that I wouldn't be able to relax until after my interview. This part of the competition counts for 25% of the final score and it is the first impression on the judges -- not to mention, I was contestant #1! I was extremely relieved after the interview when I felt it went well. The judges were so warm and welcoming!
Then, it was showtime. The categories flew by - introduction, swimsuit, talent, evening gown, on stage question. Before I knew it, it was all over and we were waiting for the crowning moment. I knew there was nothing I could do at that moment but be proud of everything I put out on the stage.
They began with the special awards. Thousands of dollars were donated by local individuals sponsors and companies. I was so excited to walk away with the Star of Tomorrow Award from the DeBetta Family, the Higher Education Award (an essay contest) from Dr. Truncali, and - my personal favorite - Miss Congeniality as voted by the contestants! I had won Miss Congeniality at the Miss Staten Island 2012 pageant, as well, and was so moved by the gesture from my fellow contestants.

Suddenly, it was time. They began with the teen contestants. My friend, Alexa Moley, was competing and I was anxiously waiting to hear the results. And the winners are...
Miss Richmond County's OT: Charista Mroczek
Miss Staten Island's OT: Alexa Moley
At this point, the tears had already begun. SHE DID IT! I was so proud of all the teens. Their competition was definitely close!

Then, it was the misses turn. We all moved forward and held hands, knowing that no matter what would happen next, we all gave it everything we had. And the winners are...
Miss Richmond County: Stephanie Accardo
Miss Staten Island: JAMIE LYNN MACCHIA!

I actually did it! I think I had a moment of shock, since I didn't move right when they called my name. It was even more special to get to hug Amanda Alicea (Miss SI 2013) and Ashley Davis (Miss SI's Outstanding Teen 2013), two friends I made this past year, right before the crowning. I couldn't believe it - I had just made history. I am now the first Miss Staten Island to ever achieve the title twice!

I am honored and ready to take on 2014! I will be moving on to the Miss New York competition in May in the hopes of being chosen to represent NY at Miss America (in September)! I will continue to promote my platform, "HOPE: Inspiring Action Against Pediatric Cancer" and serve my community - because it's not about the crown;  it's about what you do with it.
Thank you to everyone who has always supported me. If you would like to follow my year, find me on Facebook or subscribe to this blog -- I will be posting regularly!