by MIKE CHAIKEN
Miss Connecticut Sylvana Gonzalez’s Miss America dreams will begin shortly.
Preliminary competitions for the national competition begin Dec. 12 and continue Dec. 13 at the Mohegan Sun Earth Expo and Convention Center in Uncasville. And the finals are slated for Dec. 15.
Tickets are available at MissAmerica.org.
Meanwhile, to celebrate Gonzalez’s journey, the Miss Connecticut Scholarship Organization held a send-off party for the New Britain native at the New Britain Museum of American Art on Nov. 27.
It was a packed house as family and friends gathered to wish Gonzalez well on the next step of her pursuit of the Miss America crown. There were plenty of hugs and photos.
As part of the celebration of her title, Gonzalez ensured guests celebrated her Puerto Rican heritage. Gonzalez will be the only Puerto Rican taking the stage at the Mohegan. And she is the first Puerto Rican to compete as Miss Connecticut in 21 years.
To reflect her Puerto Rican heritage, guests dined on traditional Puerto Rican food and drink. They also were treated with decorations that reflected the American commonwealth.
Guests also got a sneak peak of Gonzalez’s Miss America gown (no photos were allowed to keep the dress a secret until the curtain rises at Miss America) and the contestant’s interview skills.
PHOTOS by MIKE CHAIKEN