Fifty-one teenagers from throughout the United States converge on Las Vegas this week to compete for the title of Miss Teen USA 2016. The pageant is part of the MIss Universe Organization, which also owns the Miss USA Pageant. Departing from past rules, this year’s pageant will not include a swimsuit competition. Preliminary competition is scheduled for July 29 at 8 p.m. with final competition set for July 30 at 5 p.m. Both competitions will be carried live on the official Miss Teen USA website.

The pageant is also making a mobile app available through iTunes.

Donald Trump no longer owns it

The teen pageant dates back to 1983. Donald Trump bought the pageant, along with the Miss Universe and Miss USA pageants, in 1996. Trump entered into a partnership with NBC in 2002. Trump became sole owner again in 2015 and sold the pageants to WME/IMG.

Bikinis are gone, evening gowns remain

The reigning Miss Teen USA, Katherine Haik of Louisiana, lobbied for an end to the swimsuit competition, and the new owners agreed.

In lieu of swimsuits, contestants will model athletic wear to demonstrate their fitness. Other categories are evening gown, private interviews and on-stage interviews. The swimsuit competition remains a part of the Miss Universe and Miss USA pageants.

The reigning miss is an honors student

Haik, 16, was 15 when she was crowned Miss Teen USA last year. She was a sophomore at Franklinton, Louisiana. According to pageant officials, Haik maintains a 4.0 grade point average and was elected to the campus student council.

She plays softball, basketball and is a member of the high school’s competitive dance team. A sports injury led to her becoming interested in career in sports medicine. She has also worked as a model and volunteered for Special Olympics projects.

Vegas event marks return to the United States

The pageant is returning to the United States after being held for several years in the Bahamas. This year’s competition will be at the Venetian Theatre in Las Vegas.

The contestants, their families and many of their friends will stay at the resort during the pageant.

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