Friday, June 9, and Saturday, June 10, 7 p.m.
Adler Theatre, 136 East Third Street, Davenport IA
On June 9 and 10, 30 talented and intelligent young women from across the state will compete for top honors in the preliminaries and finals for the Miss Iowa and Miss Iowa's Outstanding Teen Competitions, with guests at Davenport's Adler Theatre invited to share the excitement as this year's candidates compete in four separate phases: Talent/HERStory, Health & Fitness, Evening Gown, and On-Stage Interview.
The Miss Iowa competition is the official preliminary for the state of Iowa in the Miss America Scholarship Competition, and is held in Davenport every June. During this event, both Miss Iowa and Miss Iowa's Outstanding Teen are crowned. In order to compete for Miss Iowa, you must be at least 18 years old and cannot be over 28 years old before December 31 in the year you hope to compete. In addition, you must reside, work, or attend school in Iowa. To date, no contestant from Iowa has ever won the national Miss America title, although two Miss Iowa titleholders have been named first runner-up. Miss Iowa of 1970 Cheryl Boone, meanwhile, competed in the Miss America 1971 pageant as the program's first African-American contestant.
Bailey Hodson, 24, was crowned Miss Iowa 2022 at the Adler last June, and earned scholarships totaling $12,750. Originally from Berwick, Iowa, she attended Grand View University in Des Moines, where she graduated magna cum laude in 2020 with degrees in English and Secondary Education. She also was a President’s List Honoree. Hodson worked as a middle school literacy teacher in Kansas City, Missouri, as well as in Urbandale, Iowa, before winning the title of Miss Iowa 2022. Her career ambition is to become a behavioral interventionist. Leadership positions have included being the team lead for the middle school English department; the marketing chair for the Out of the Darkness Walk; being co-founder and board president of the Dave Hodson Memorial and Wrestling Dual; and serving as a committee member for her school’s positive behavioral interventions and supports team. As Miss Iowa, Hodson's Social Impact Initiative is "The ABCs: The Anti-Bullying Campaign," and she has published two books focused on bullying-prevention strategies that can be used in the classroom.
Emily Lerch of Fruitland, Iowa, won the title of Miss Iowa’s Teen 2022 and represented Iowa's capitol city as Miss Greater Des Moines' Teen, winning that title in the fall of 2021. A 2022 graduate of Louisa-Muscatine High School, Lerch's Social Impact Initiative is "Feeding America: Actions to End Food Insecurity," and as part of her initiative, she raised more than $5,000 for the Food Bank of Iowa in one fundraising event and 250-plus pounds of non-perishable food items for food pantries across Iowa. Her efforts have provided assistance to local pantries including The Salvation Army, The Light House Pantry in Fruitland, and the Falcon Locker at Louisa-Muscatine, and Lerch is currently furthering her education at Western Illinois University. In addition to many academic scholarships she has been awarded, Emily's time in the Miss Iowa Organization has earned her $2,425 in scholarships, with her career ambitions leaning toward social work, specifically in criminal justice.
Davenport's Miss Iowa and Miss Iowa's Outstanding Teen Competition preliminaries will begin at 7 p.m. on June 9, with admission $53 to the Friday-night event, and the competitions' finals will be held at 7 p.m. on June 10, with Saturday-evening seating available for $68. For tickets, call (800)745-3000 and visit AdlerTheatre.com.