About three hours after stepping onto the Saroyan Theatre stage Friday night along with 20 other Miss California’s Outstanding Teen hopefuls, Miss Santa Clara Isabella Mills walked off with the title.
Mills, who is home-schooled with the San Francisco-based OASIS K-12 City Ballet, earned a $10,000 scholarship as she succeeded the 2018 titleholder Cameron Doan.
She also won the evening wear/on-stage question competition. Mills performed a ballet on pointe for her talent.
Mills stood next to Miss Yorba Linda Karissa Dole as both awaited the announcement of the winner. When she heard her name, Mills’ mouth dropped in shock before she had the sash and crown placed on her.
Mills, who has a taste for root beer, hopes to become a principal dancer with the American Ballet Theatre.
Dole won a $2,500 scholarship. She also added $500 for winning the scholastic award.
The second runner-up was Miss Los Ángeles County Maya Denise Gaskin, who pocketed a $2,000 scholarship.
Third runner-up went to Miss Sonoma County Emma Chen. She earned a $1,500 scholarship, and also added another $500 for winning the talent after playing the Chopin piece ‘Ballada in G Minor’ on the piano.
Fourth runner-up and $1,000 in scholarships went to Miss Placentia Peyhton Heitz.
This year’s teen pageant was held all in one evening. In the past, it has been stretched out over three days. The competition began in 1999, and at least two winners have gone on to win the Miss California title.
The Miss California 2019 will be crowned Saturday (June 29), with the pageant scheduled to start at 4:30 p.m. at the Saroyan Theatre. The finals will be televised from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. on KJEO Channel 47.
This marks the first year the Miss California pageant will not have the swimsuit competition.