Miss Italia Pageant Returning To Festival

Miss Italia Pageant Returning To Festival

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It's coming back - the Miss Italia pageant will return to Watertown's Bravo Italiano festival at the end of August.

After the pageant was canceled last year, organizer Kathy Lettiere says she's ready to plan for it once again.

"This is a family pageant. There's no talent involved. There's no swimsuit involved. It's all about family, and it's all about traditions," she said.

And, the pageant really is all about family.

"I have another picture here, it's of me and my grandfather actually dancing right after I had given up my crown for Miss Italia," said Kristan Donoghue, Lettiere's daughter.

She competed for the crown in 2004 and won.

Going down memory lane, Kristan says the pageant wasn't about the glitz and glamor. It was unique.

"It was different because it was all about ancestry. Everyone doing research about their family. Figuring out, well, my family's from this part of Italy, and my family's from this part," she said.

Jeri Gosier is another former Miss Italia who won back in 2000. 

"I learned some presentational skills. I also got to meet some girls I wouldn't have otherwise met in the area, so camaraderie and intellect is a great blend," she said.

Both former winners say they hope these happy memories continue for generations to come. 

This year's pageant will be held Friday, August 24 at 7 p.m. 

The deadline for applications is August 20. Anyone interested can contact Kathy Lettiere at A Touch Of Grace in Watertown. 

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