ST. CHARLES – After being crowned about two weeks ago, Brittany Smith is making one of her first appearances on the county fair circuit this weekend at the Kane County Fair as she gets acclimated to her new role as Miss Illinois.
Smith, 23, is planning an appearance from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday at the Kane County Fair in St. Charles, where she’ll be raising money for the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals – a charity that helps provide comfort and treatment to sick children. Her goal is to raise at least $8,000 for the organization before competing in the Miss America competition in September.
“We try to raise as much money as we can,” she said. “In order to compete in Miss America, you have to have a goal of what you want to raise. ... It’s part of my job and my responsibility, but I’d like to go above that [goal].”
Smith, of Elmhurst, graduated from Purdue University a year ago. That’s where she participated in her first pageant and was named Miss Purdue her senior year. Last year, after competing in her second pageant ever, she took the title of Miss Indiana.
After deciding she wanted to compete in her home state, she won Miss Northern Suburbs back in October, allowing her to compete at the state level in Illinois. A few weeks ago, she was crowned Miss Illinois.
“It’s one of those moments where you have to go back later and watch it,” she said. “It was so overwhelming, exciting and shocking all at the same time.”
To stand out from the 31 other contestants, Smith said she performed an Irish dance, and said she’s a big proponent of living a healthy lifestyle.
“It’s all about being yourself and having a good time,” she said.
By winning the Miss Illinois title, Smith receives scholarship funds, which she hopes to use for graduate school as she pursues a career as a physician’s assistant.
She will compete for Miss America on Sept. 15.