Jun 4, 2012

Miss Rhode Island, Olivia Culpo, is crowned Miss USA 2012

Co-Owner of the Miss Universe Organization, Donald Trump, addresses Miss Texas USA 2012, Brittany Lynn Booker; Miss Tennessee USA 2012, Jessica Hibler; Miss South Dakota USA 2012, Taylor Neisen; Miss South Carolina USA 2012, Erika Powell; Miss Rhode Island USA 2012, Olivia Culpo; Miss Pennsylvania USA 2012, Sheena Monnin; Miss Oregon USA 2012, Alaina Bergsma; Miss Oklahoma USA 2012, Lauren Taylor Lundeen; Miss Ohio USA 2012, Audrey Bolte; Miss North Dakota USA 2012, Jaci Stofferahn; Miss North Carolina USA 2012, Sydney Marie Perry; Miss New York USA 2012, Johanna Sambucini; Miss New Mexico USA 2012, Jessica Renee Martin; and Miss New Jersey USA 2012, Michelle Leonardo; on the last day of rehearsal for the Miss USA 2012 Competition, Saturday June 2, 2012 from the Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino Theatre for the Performing Arts in Las Vegas, Nevada. The 2012 MISS USA Pageant will air LIVE on NBC June 3 at 9:00 p.m. ET from the Theatre for Performing Arts in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Miss Universe Organization)

Suddenly band camp got a lot more glamorous! A 20-year-old Cranston, Rhode Island native – who talked about her love of the cello and spending her summers at band camp – was the winner of Sunday's 61st Annual Miss USA Pageant.
Olivia Culpo, a student at Boston College where she's a regular on the Dean's List, beat out 50 other hopefuls in the beauty contest, during which she worked the stage at the Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino in Las Vegas wearing a pink bikini and purple Grecian style evening gown. The brunette talked about the influence music has had in her life – she played the cello for 13 years, noting, "Band camp was my summer every summer." Other information given out about her during the pageant? She was "short and chubby" growing until she hit a growth spurt. She is also passionate about "quoting celebrities" and shared her favorite saying by Audrey Hepburn.
Miss Rhode Island, Olivia Culpo
When it came time to answering the final question of the evening, she had the most serious in the bunch: Would it be fair if a transgender woman won the Miss Universe title? She agreed with the organization's recent decision to include transgender contestants. "I do think that would be fair, but I could understand how people could be apprehensive to take that road," she said. However, "there are so many people who have a need to change for a happier life. I do accept that because I believe it's a free country." The crowd liked her response, cheering wildly.
Bravo's Andy Cohen and E!'s Giuliana Rancic hosted the show, which aired on NBC. The judge's panel included Arsenio Hall, Joe Jonas, and Rob Kardashian, who made a dig at the contestants saying they wore too much makeup and their hair was too big. Kelly Osbourne was a roving reporter. Akon and Cobra Starship performed. Of course Donald Trump, who co-owns the Miss Universe Organization with NBC, was front and center as well.
Culpo will compete in the Miss Universe pageant in December.
Miss Rhode Island, 20-year-old Olivia Culpo, was named the winner of the 2012 Miss USA pageant on Sunday, beating out 51 other contestants who competed at the Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino in Las Vegas.

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