Shelley Bryson Benthall, a Belmont student from Florence, S.C., was crowned Miss South Carolina, winning a $20,000 scholarship and a chance to go to the Miss America pageant. She also won the pageant’s physical fitness competition, which accounted for 15 percent of the total score. Benthall was crowned Miss South Carolina Teen in 2003; she is the first contestant to win both pageants in South Carolina.
The Miss America pageant will tape a seven-episode documentary series titled “Finding Miss America” in Los Angeles from Sept. 5 to Sept. 13. The series will air on Country Music Television for a week before the televised pageant finals in January and will show the 52 women in preliminary competition and give viewers a chance to choose which ones advance to the top 15 for a shot at becoming Miss America 2007.