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Bennett CerfBennett Cerf
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wins, it means about $150,000. For all the other contestants there are big scholarships. It's a great promotion for Atlantic City. Their season used to end on Labor Day, and the Miss America contest keeps that season going ten days longer. It's such a fool-proof idea, that, of course, it's been widely copied.


Did you find it difficult to judge?


Yes. You've got to work on Wednesday night, Thursday, Friday, and then end on Saturday. The most boring part is watching the girls exhibit their skills. They're all such hopeless amateurs! That's an exaggeration. Three or four of them are pretty good. One can sing well and one can play the piano well, but...oh, watching them all--and rating them! The evening dress contest is also a bore, but the bathing suit competition makes up for everything! It's fun being around these pretty little kids--especially for an oldster like me! They're guarded like Fort Knox with local chaperons. In addition, every one has a motorcycle cop taking care of her. The way that you meet the girls is that you have breakfast with them Thursday, Friday, and Saturday mornings. It's like that party that Alicia gave for Adlai Stevenson. There are three girls at a table and one empty seat, and the judges move from table to table. A little bell rings and you move on to the next table. So you've got about ten or fifteen minutes with each group of three girls

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