by MIKE CHAIKEN
Woodbury, Conn. teen Lindiana Frangu didn’t walk away with the title of Miss America’s Outstanding Teen. But she still had an amazing time.
Frangu spent three nights in the preliminaries for the national title competing in the evening gown and onstage interview, lifestyle and fitness, and talent categories on the stage of the Orange County Convention Center. Before she stepped in front of the public in Orlando, Fla., she had a private interview with judges.
But on the fourth night – the finals– as the top 15 contestants were read off, Frangu’s name was not among them.
The title of Miss America’s Outstanding Teen eventually went to Miss Washington Payton May.
Interviewed on the second night of preliminaries, July 24, Frangu said, “It’s been awesome. I’m feeling great about the last two competitions I’ve competed in– evening gown yesterday (July 23) and lifestyle and fitness today.”
“I feel great,” said the former Miss Bristol’s Outstanding Teen, of the experience at Miss America’s Outstanding Teen. “It’s so fun to connect with all these girls from different states and to just sit at any table I want to and start a conversation with anybody.”
Although she hasn’t bonded with any one particular girl, Frangu said, “I do love my roommate, Kentucky, Landry (Feldmeir), she’s amazing. We’ve bonded over the nights. But I think we’re all just one big group. We’re close, super close, friends so I think it’s pretty awesome.”
When she stood off stage for the first night of preliminaries, and it dawned on her where she was, Frangu said, “I was just in tears. ‘Oh my gosh, I’m on the Miss America’s Outstanding Teen stage. I’m competing.’ I was just in awe. I honestly started tearing up when we finished our last pose in the opening number. But it’s been amazing.”
At the end of the first night, Frangu said, “I was just so excited so ready to see my family at visitation (after the first night of preliminaries was finished). I’ve been having an amazing time but I also miss home.”
At the end of week, Frangu had hoped she would have walked away with the Miss America’s Outstanding Teen crown. But even though she didn’t, Frangu said, she still has a job to do as Miss Connecticut’s Outstanding Teen. The national title, she said, would merely have been a promotion.
Here is what the audience saw of Frangu on finals night July 27.
PHOTOS by MIKE CHAIKEN