Crowd wishes Miss Mississippi farewell

Published 12:38 pm Monday, August 18, 2014

More than 100 well-wishers turned out for Miss Mississippi 2014 Jasmine Murray’s Miss America send-off Sunday.

In previous years, Miss Mississippi has worn and shown off what she will wear during the Miss America pageant.

This year, though, with pageant officials aiming to be more secretive, she was not able to do that.

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Murray was able to show off the shoes she will be wearing during the “Show Me The Shoe Parade,” which will be held Sept. 13 in Atlantic City, N.J.

All of the contestants will wear a unique pair of shoes that is supposed to symbolize their state. With Mississippi’s branding campaign labeling it as “the birthplace of American music,” and with Murray being a musician herself, Murray tried to capture that with her shoes.

“I was trying to embrace the music and talent of Mississippi. They are very musically inclined shoes,” Murray said.

Murray introduced her princesses for this year, Addison Jackson and Lauren Killroy.

Murray then highlighted parts of her platform, “13 Going On 30.”

Her platform’s goal, she said, is to raise awareness about teen issues. She and ambassadors in several states teach adolescents and teenagers the importance of “living their age,” and discuss issues such as teen pregnancy and bullying through speaking events and camps.

“It’s all about getting young girls to embrace their age and not grow up too fast. We focus on the way they dress, making good decisions, and having positive role models. If you learn to focus on positive goals, all the negative goes away,” Murray said.

With about a month left before the pageant, Murray has big expectations for herself.

“I expect to win. I am so blessed and privileged. It’s also all about enjoying the journey and this incredibly unique experience.”

Murray is preparing for every scenario because “every aspect of the pageant is important,” she said.

She also has a new fitness trainer and is practicing the talent portion of her performance. Visitors at the send-off got a sneak peek at her talent routine when she performed Christina Aguilera’s “Something’s Got A Hold On Me.”

A new voting portion of the pageant will allow the public to vote for a participant to advance to the final round.

To vote for Murray through “America’s Choice,” visit The winner of that will automatically make it to the top 15 of the pageant.

Miss America 2015 will be televised live on ABC Sept.14 at 8 p.m.