By Mike DeNardo
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (CBS) — 2013 saw the return of an Atlantic City tradition.
On Valentine’s Day, Lieutenant Governor Kim Guadagno made the announcement.
“Welcome back to Atlantic City, the Miss America Organization and the Miss America pageant.”
After seven years in Las Vegas, New Jersey enticed Miss America to return to the place where the pageant began in 1921. It took a package including hundreds of free and discounted hotel rooms, free use of Boardwalk Hall, and more than $7 million in state and county money to help pay production costs over three years. Casino Reinvestment Development Authority executive director John Palmieri expected that investment to provide a local jackpot.
“We’ve concluded, based on the consulting study that was prepared, that we’ll see about 30 to 35 million dollars in economic impact,” Palmieri said.
In September, the famed “Show Us Your Shoes” parade and the pageant returned to Boardwalk Hall.
“I was the first Indian Miss New York, and I’m so proud to be the first Indian Miss America,” said 24-year-old Nina Davuluri who became Miss America 2014. “To be the first, or, well, the first Miss America crowned back in Atlantic City, was such an honor to walk that runway.”
Davuluri planned to promote a platform of celebrating diversity.