PASSAIC COUNTY, N.J. -- Could you or someone you know be the next Miss America?
Applications are being accepted for contestants ages 17 to 23 to compete for the title of Miss America. Women who live, work or attend school in Bergen County are eligible to compete for the title of Miss Bergen County and women who live, work or attend school in Bergen, Passaic and Essex Counties are eligible to compete for the Miss Ramapo Valley crown.
Winners of both titles will go on to compete for the title of Miss New Jersey next June in Ocean City. The current Miss New Jersey, Kaitlyn Schoeffel, will compete for the title of Miss America live on ABC on September 10.
Applications are also being accepted for contestants to compete for Miss America's sister program Miss America 's Outstanding Teen. Talented Teens ages 12 to16 who live in New Jersey are eligible to compete for the titles of Miss Bergen County's Outstanding Teen and Miss Ramapo Valley's Outstanding Teen.
The teen competition will take place simultaneously with the Miss Bergen County and Ramapo Valley competitions on August 19 at the Fair Lawn Community Center in Fair Lawn.
The current Miss Bergen County is Celinda Ortega from Fair Lawn and the current Miss Ramapo Valley is Lauren Staub from Avon by the Sea. Both women are graduates of Montclair State University and recently competed in Ocean City for the title of Miss New Jersey where Staub was awarded $2,800 in scholarships and Ortega $300 in scholarship.