(We’re on hiatus this week. This post was first published October 30, 2006)
It seems the very first Miss Teen USA pageant was held in Lakeland in 1983. The video above was a “tour” of Lakeland by the reigning Miss USA, Julie Hayek. From the video you’d think all Lakeland had to offer was phosphate, oranges, and lakes.
For those who like to play “Where are they now,” Julie Hayek was an actress for a bit. I think her best role might have been “Olga the Masseuse” on Matlock. Yes, she has her own website.
I can’t find anything about host Michael Young after 1989, but the winner of that first Miss Teen was Ruth Zakarian. I found she also turned to acting, but used the name Devon Pierce. You can see her winning the crown here.
If you’d like to see more of Lakeland, the show used Scott Lake, Lake Hollingsworth and Florida Southern College as backdrops for the Swimsuit Fashion Show
The pageant introduction started with a mention of the “beautiful Lakeland Civic Center.” It even includes a brief peek of the Lakeland High School Marching Band and the Florida Southern College Men’s Ensemble. You’ll also get a quick glimpse of The Solid Gold Dancers! (Yeah, you have to be over 30 to understand the import of that.)
The Lakeland High School Marching band was featured in the production number, Salute to the Circus while the Sold Gold Dancers and the contestants pay homage to “Let’s Get Physical” with an exercise production number. (As far as I can see, no one from Lakeland has to apologize for being in that number.)
If you must, you can even see Air Supply sing Making Love (Out of Nothing at All).