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Miss New Jersey 2018 preliminary competitions begin

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OCEAN CITY — The first night of preliminary competitions are complete ahead of the Miss New Jersey 2018 crowning this weekend. 

Thursday marked the first night of preliminaries for this year's 28 contestants at Ocean City Music Pier.

On the first night, half of the contestants competed in the swimsuit and evening gown categories, and the other half competed in the talent and on-stage question-and-answer portions.

Winners for the swimsuit category and talent categories were chosen at the conclusion of the first night: Miss Coastal Shores Natalie Ragazzo and Miss South Shore Jaime Gialloreto tied for the swimsuit portion, and Kyra Seeley, Miss Seashore Line, won the talent portion with an Irish step dance routine.

The groups will switch categories during the preliminary competition at 7:30 p.m. Friday at the Ocean City Music Pier.

Current Miss New Jersey Kaitlyn Schoeffel at Thursday's preliminary competition performed dance routines for the crowd, and said it's "bittersweet" that a new Miss New Jersey will be crowned in a few days.

"I’m definitely sad," she said. "But I’m excited to start a new chapter."

The Press will continue to have full coverage and photos of the preliminary competitions, with a live blog.

On Wednesday, the contestants rode down the Ocean City boardwalk in the annual parade as famous and notable women in history.

A new Miss New Jersey will be crowned on Saturday.

Contact: 609-272-7239

​eserpico@pressofac.com

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Covering breaking news for The Press of Atlantic City since September 2016. Graduate of the University of Maryland, Central Jersey native.