Pictures: Instructor Katherine Kelley of North Las Vegas wins Miss Nevada Pageant

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L.E. Baskow

Miss Summerlin Katherine Kelley is crowned the brand-new Miss Nevada by outgoing winner Ellie Smith throughout the pageant at the Smith Center on Saturday, June 27, 2015.

Monday, June 29, 2015|4:31 p.m.

2015 Miss Nevada at Smith Center
Newly crowned Miss Nevada Outstanding Teen Lauren Watson and Miss Nevada Katherine Kelley together on the stage following the pageant at the Smith Center on Saturday, June 27, 2015.Launch slideshow “

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Miss Summerlin Katherine Kelley postures in swimwear during the Miss Nevada Pageant and crowning at the Smith Center on Saturday, June 27, 2015. She will go on to win the title later on in the evening.

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Miss Summerlin Katherine Kelley strolls along the stage in evening gown throughout the Miss Nevada Pageant and crowning at the Smith Center on Saturday, June 27, 2015. She will certainly go on to win the title later at night.

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Miss Summerlin Katherine Kelley plays the piano in the talent portion of the Miss Nevada Pageant and crowning at the Smith Center on Saturday, June 27, 2015. She will go on to win the title later in the evening.

The feared onstage last questions at the 2015 Miss Nevada Pageant over the weekend included race relations, South Carolina church shootings, weapon ownership, Friday’s U.S. Supreme Court choice on same-sex marriage, online dating websites, L.a to Las Vegas high-speed train, Electric Daisy Carnival and college tuition costs being paid by taxpayers.

Then came a Caitlyn Jenner question: Jenna Holdrige, 19, from Reno was asked, “If you were a Kardashian, exactly what would you state to Caitlyn?” It took less than a second of idea, and she addressed, “I love you, Daddy.”

It brought her stunning applause from the audience at the Smith Center for the Performing Arts enjoying the 67th year of the Miss Nevada Pageant, an initial to September’s Miss America Pageant in Atlantic City.

But it didn’t win her the title and crown.

That went to 23-year-old Katherine Kelley of North Las Vegas, who went into as 2015 Miss Summerlin. She impressed playing classic piano and looked sophisticated and glowing in her red pageant gown. Katherine also won an award for Exceptional Academic Accomplishment.

Sixteen-year-old Lauren Watson of Las Vegas won the Miss Nevada Exceptional Teen Pageant. She’s another appeal pageant winner from hair brilliant Michael Boychuck at his hair salon Color in Caesars Palace. He’s been the mane guy for various model, consisting of 2014 Miss Nevada UNITED STATE turned 2014 Miss USA Nia Sanchez– the first from our Silver State and very first runner-up at Miss Universe– and 1995 Miss UNITED STATE Shanna Moakler.

Our thanks to Las Vegas Sun professional photographer L.E. Baskow for his stunning photo gallery of the winners and entrants taking part in swimwear, talent and evening dress.

This year’s judges included “Jersey Boys” Musical Director Keith Thompson, starlet and performer Susan Anton, Vegas Magazine Editor in Chief Andrea Bennett and our own Las Vegas Sun Editor at Huge John Katsilometes.

They had a difficult task with the high quality of entrants. Performers Clint Holmes and his other half, Kelly Clinton Holmes, were MCs for the pageants.

The candidates captivated with modern, acrobatic and tap dance, piano, monologues and singing. All revealed unbelievable poise and self-confidence in their lovely dress, and no one stumbled over the concerns even if they didn’t address the questions exactly.

Sam Haskell, Miss America CEO who flew in for our state competitors, said: “You have reached new heights. The changes made in the Miss Nevada Organization are actually good, and I take a look at these young women who have competed and understand that America’s future is protected.

“As we approach the 95th anniversary of the Miss America Pageant in September, I am confident that we will be more alive and successful as in years past.”

Sam presented Las Vegas resident Lynn Weidner, Miss New Jersey in 1971, as the very first chairwoman of the Miss American Organization’s brand-new Board of Directors.

Katherine, who has a 4.0 GPA in her master’s program at UNLV, moved right here from Alabama to teach grade school mathematics. Her platform is “Improving Public School Attendance: Every Day Counts.”

2014 Miss Nevada Ellie Smith of Henderson pinned the tiara on Katherine. Ellie is a first-year student in the music, dance and theater program at BYU. She represented our Silver State last September and won special acknowledgment for her talent performances.

Ellie informed me: “This is a little bittersweet, however I’m excited to pass on the crown. It has been an incredible year, particularly with my little sis Amy, who was Miss Nevada Impressive Teenager for the very same year. That was an included perk– the best! We just struck the ground running.

“It was life-altering. It was such a journey with my personal platform and getting my book out there. An incredible year. I will certainly constantly recall at it for being so fantastic, however I’m ready now for somebody else to take over.

“I matured. This year has actually altered me. I’m still who I was a year back. I remained true to myself, my values and my morals. I was a little 17-year-old, and now I’m an 18-year-old. That’s a jump. Entirely more mature and big shoes to fill. I never thought I ‘d win being simply 17, so it was an eye-opener. I had to make changes, and I grew.

“Now I have 3 more years of college at BYU, then flying right to New york city to pursue Broadway, which has been my dream considering that I was 3 years of ages. Fingers crossed, and God surprises you along the way.”

Minutes after she was crowned Miss Nevada, Katherine informed me: “I am totally shocked. I’m really fired up and grateful for this opportunity. I’m overwhelmed. It’s going to take a few days to recognize exactly what took place. I have to start packing and preparing instantly for the Miss America Pageant. There’s not a lot of time.”

Although she wowed with her classical piano, Katherine continued: “I don’t think I wish to be an expert musician. I am an instructor in North Las Vegas. I’ve always had a love of mathematics, and I want to continue teaching it. Numerous students do not enjoy it, and I want to influence them with it.”

Miss Nevada Company President and Executive Director Jodi Hale Fonfa commented: “We awarded scholarships upwards of $57,000 raised in simply five months, and that’s more cash than was raised in the last 5 years incorporated. The future of the Miss Nevada Scholarship Organization is a bright one, and this year’s milestones are steppingstones for the future.

“I feel with our brand-new company and pageant that Nevada has officially shown up.”

Robin Leach of “Lifestyles of the Rich & & Famous” popularity has actually been a reporter for more than 50 years and has spent the past 15 years giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum play area.

Follow Robin Leach on Twitter at Twitter.com/ Robin_Leach.

Follow Las Vegas Sun Home entertainment + Luxury Senior Editor Don Chareunsy on Twitter at Twitter.com/ VDLXEditorDon.

Smith Center for the Carrying out Arts The Smith Center for the Performing Arts provides a mix of performances by resident business and exploring destinations. The 5-acre cultural school features 3 performance spaces, that includes a main performance location with more than 2,000 seats. This downtown cultural center of Las Vegas wants to educate, captivate and delight environment members.
361 Symphony Park Ave Las Vegas, NV Las Vegas, NV 89106
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