On Saturday, Adrianne Kemp learned the answer to a question she'd always pondered.
"I never understood why the girls cried when they were crowned until last night," said Ms. Kemp, who was crowned Miss Augusta 2007 at the pageant at the Augusta State University Grover C. Maxwell Performing Arts Theatre.
Ms. Kemp said an overwhelming wave of emotions cascaded through her as officials announced that she won.
It was as though she could feel the emotions throughout her entire being.
"It was something I will never forget," she said.
Ms. Kemp also won the talent portion of the competition, singing Summertime from Porgy and Bess, and was named Miss Congeniality.
A University of South Carolina Aiken senior and North Augusta resident, Ms. Kemp, 22, wants to use her title of Miss Augusta to bring awareness the problem of child molestation.
"I just felt that was my calling," she said.
As Miss Augusta 2007, Ms. Kemp received a $1,000 scholarship.
She is a pre-med biology major and is contemplating her next step.
She had thought of becoming of pediatrician but is now considering cosmetic dentistry or ophthalmology.
During the next several months, Ms. Kemp will prepare for the next step as a contestant in the Miss Georgia competition.
Mia Talia Lowe, the first runner-up, won the swimsuit competition. Samantha Osteen, the second runner-up, won for evening wear. Nina Talukdar was the People's Choice.
In the second annual Miss Augusta Outstanding Teen, Kayla Byrd, a sophomore at Evans Christian Academy, was crowned.
Reach Charmain Brackett at firstname.lastname@example.org.