If you're 25, you're over the hill -- at least if you want to be Miss America.
Last month, 24-year-old Amanda Longacre was stripped of her title as Miss Delaware for being too old and now the former beauty queen is suing the pageant for $3 million in damages. In June, the Miss America organization not only stripped Longacre of her title but took back $11,000 dollars in scholarship money, all because she would turn 25 one month after the pageant. A pageant she hasn't even won yet!
The beauty queen claims she was clear about her age and birthdate from the start and was told that as long as she was under 25 at the time of the pageant she was in compliance with the rules. The organization's website states that eligible contestants must be between the ages of 17 and 24.
Carolyn Nelson, media relations coordinator for the Miss Delaware organization spoke with with NBC in June and confirmed that Longacre accurately reported her birth date on applications.
According to Delaware Online, the lawsuit alleges that the Miss America organization knowingly recruits ineligible contestants. And in this case, that a top pageant official offered Longacre a wine and cheese pajama party to make up for the age snafu.
The suit filed on Wednesday also seeks the restoration of her titles as Miss Pike Creek and Miss Delaware and the ability to complete the full years reign in the state as well as an age waiver to complete in the Miss America pageant.
In a brief statement to Delaware Online the Miss America organization said "This case has no merit and we will vigorously defend it." This year's Miss America pageant is held September 14th at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey.