The reigning Miss Eastern Shore on Saturday surrendered her title as she was crowned Miss New Jersey 2017 at Ocean City. Kaitlyn Schoeffel, 24, will travel from her home in Egg Harbor Township to Atlantic City in September to compete in the "Miss America 2018" pageant.

The national competition gets under way with three days of preliminary competition on Sept. 6. Contestants will take a break from pageantry on Sept.

9 to participate in the "Show Us Your Shoes" parade. They return to a final night of competition on Sept. 10 that will be televised live by the ABC television network.

She has a sense of humor

The appearance on ABC will not be her first appearance on national television. In February, CBS aired her appearance on “The Price is Right.” On the show, taped in November, she won more than $30,000 in prizes, including a trip to Argentina and a sailboat.

She hopes for a career in entertainment, both as a performer and owner of an performing artists’ agency. She earned a bachelor’s degree in broadcast from Montclair State University, and plans to study for a master’s degree in business administration.

If she wins the national title, she will become the third contestant from New Jersey to wear the crown. The first was Bette Cooper in 1937, followed by Suzette Charles in 1984.

Charles served the remainder of Vanessa Williams’ term after Williams relinquished her title. Charles finished as first runner-up at the pageant. During the history of the Miss America competition, New Jersey has placed eight contestants as runners-up and an additional five in the top 10.

Known for her Sense Of Humor, among the interesting facts Kaitlyn lists about herself in her pageant profile are “I have eaten both a tarantula and a scorpion; I can recite the alphabet backwards; I am a mind reader in training; I have been cut into two pieces; I can breathe and eat fire (and) I have stood inside one of the world’s most active volcanoes.”

Teen pageants

The state pageant also participates in Miss America’s Outstanding Teen program.

Younger girls compete at the local, state and national levels for scholarships. Much of the pageant is similar to the Miss America pageant, but the teens compete in active wear rather than a swimsuit competition.

The reigning Miss New Jersey’s Outstanding Teen is Augostina Mallous. She was the reigning Miss Cape May Court House’s Outstanding Teen when judges chose her earlier this year to represent the state later this summer at the national teen pageant in Orlando, Florida.

If she wins the national crown, she will become the first New Jersey contestant to reign as the top teen miss. Last year’s representative from the state, Nina Morajes, was a Teens in Action Finalist at nationals.

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