Don’t Waste Your Money: Beauty Pageant letters - Toledo News Now, Breaking News, Weather, Sports, Toledo

Don’t Waste Your Money: Beauty Pageant letters

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(Toledo News Now) - Every young girl dreams of being a beauty queen that's why when a letter shows up in the mail saying your daughter has been selected for a beauty pageant, it's tough to say no.

Too many times that invitation leads to expenses and disappointment.

A 13-year old was thrilled when she received an invitation to The 2012 Miss Teen Contest.

"We got a letter at the house, and it said someone had referred her to be a participant in this pageant," said mother Nikkie Blaney.

Blaney took her daughter to the information session at a local Holiday Inn.

"Through the interview they said we had to ask sponsors to participate and collect almost $500," said Blaney.

Blaney was concerned so she got online and found complaints saying the $495 fee was just the beginning of what they would have to pay for photos, gowns, travel, and tickets.

"I just started doing some more of my own research, and everything didn't add up," said Blaney.

A spokeswoman for the pageant said it is a legitimate company, gives away thousands in scholarships and said all fees are disclosed in advance.

The Better Business Bureau reports that the phone number connects to "America's Beauty Pageants," a company with an "F" rating from the BBB.

Miss Teen is not connected with Miss Teen America or Miss Teen USA, two pageants with long histories and good BB ratings. Blaney's daughter backed out.

"I thought, I didn't really need a real beauty pageant.  I have beauty inside and that's all that really matters," said Blaney.

Before you ever consider any sort of talent competition, beauty pageant, or TV show audition, do a thorough Google search of the company holding the trials.

You should be able to find out in a few minutes if it truly is a worthwhile production, or a case of don't waste your money.

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