Bridges was crowned in front of a near sold out crowd by 2012 Miss Cobb Stephanie Burkholder in the Jennie T. Anderson Theater at the Cobb Civic Center in Marietta. She’ll spend the next year as Cobb’s ambassador and compete in next June’s Miss Georgia Pageant in Columbus.
As Miss Cobb, Bridges won a $10,000 cash scholarship.
“I attend Georgia Tech, so that’s definitely going to help my parents out a lot,” Bridges said after winning. “I’m also just honored to represent just an incredible county. I’m just feeling really blessed right now.”
Bridges is the eldest of five children of John and Cathy Bridges, who own a farm in southwest Georgia. She is a sophomore at Georgia Tech, where she is majoring in chemical engineering with a minor in Spanish. Bridges won three teen pageants leading up to her Miss Cobb win.
Bridges wasn’t the only one who was anxious before the winner of the night was announced.
As other contestants were being named as runners-up, her mother was preparing to send a text message to her father, relatives and friends, to let them know she hadn’t won.
“It said, ‘Miss Cobb County is …,’ and I was about to fill in the blank and was sitting there thinking, ‘Maggie didn’t get anything,” recalled, Cathy, a nurse. “I was thinking she must have been sixth place.”
Saturday night was the culmination of many years of hard work for Maggie, whose first foray into pageants at around the age of 8 was described as a “disaster” by her mother. She won Miss Pine Seedling in Decatur County, but it went downhill from there against more experienced contestants at the state level. “We just weren’t ready for something like that level,” Cathy said.
Maggie’s platform issue is “Impacting the Lives of Others through Volunteerism,” which she hopes to use to inspire others to volunteer as she has with children and adults.
For her talent, Maggie — who was sponsored by the North Georgia State Fair — sang “Somewhere” from the hit musical “West Side Story.” She wore a lime-green bikini during the swimsuit portion of the contest and was crowned in a one-shoulder, white evening gown, which she borrowed from a close friend.
Miss Cobb Pageant President Gene Phillips said he believed the judges thought Maggie was the best overall contestant amongst one of the pageant’s most impressive field of participants.
As outgoing advice to the 18 contestants, Burkholder — who placed in the top 10 at the most recent Miss Georgia — told the young women to remain confident and use their abilities wisely. “Even if the results aren’t what you want, God is going to put you exactly where you are supposed to be,” she told them in her farewell speech.
FOX 5 Atlanta meteorologist Joanne Feldman served as Saturday night’s mistress of ceremonies. Feldman captured the title of Miss Cobb in 1993. ComPAny 2013 from Pebblebrook High School’s Cobb County Centre for Excellence in the Performing Arts provided entertainment.
Miss Cobb contestants are required to be single and never married, between 17 and 23 years old, and a high school graduate.
Brianna Godshalk, 19, of Marietta, won first runner-up for the second straight year. The Fordham University student, who also won a congeniality award and a preliminary talent award, received a $1,250 cash scholarship.
Katherine McCauley, 19, of Marietta, won second runner-up, which came with a $1,000 cash scholarship. She attends Kennesaw State University.
Lauren Green, 21, of Acworth, won third runner-up. She received a $750 cash scholarship. Green attends Kennesaw State University.
The fourth runner-up was Heather Fulbright, 18, of Johns Creek, who attends the University of Georgia. Fulbright, who tied with Carly Gill of Kennesaw for the preliminary talent award, won a $500 scholarship.
In a ceremony last night, Abby Quarles, 15, of east Cobb, was awarded the title of 2013 Miss Cobb County’s Outstanding Teen. The Johnson Ferry Christian Academy student will compete for Miss Georgia’s Outstanding Teen next June in Columbus. Quarles was crowned by Amelia Hunt, the 2012 Miss Cobb County’s Outstanding Teen and first runner-up in the recent state pageant.
The annual Miss Cobb pageant is sponsored by the Miss Cobb County Scholarship Pageant Inc., a nonprofit composed of community volunteers. This year, the pageant awarded a total of more than $30,000 in cash scholarships and prizes. Since it began in 1958, the program has awarded more than $250,000 in scholarship money.