Amanda Narciso crowned Miss Massachusetts 2013

Amanda Narciso is crowned Miss Massachusetts 2013. Photos by Steve Smith - www.stevephotographysmith.com

Amanda Narciso is crowned Miss Massachusetts 2013. Photos by Steve Smith – www.stevephotographysmith.com

Persistence pays off. Just ask Amanda Naricso, who became Miss Massachusetts 2013 on her fifth try.

She was also the runner-up in 2011 and 2012, so she was all too familiar with being on the stage when the final names are called.

“When first runner-up was about to be announced this time, I was terrified,” she said, “and I was excited. I wasn’t sure what was going to happen, and when they didn’t call my name, I was still unsure. When they called my name as Miss Massachusetts, it was such an unreal and surreal feeling. I’d been working so hard for so long.”

Narciso is a Salve Regina University graduate, and majored in psychology. Her platform, “Best Buddies,” is a non-profit organization that works with people with mental and intellectual disabilities.

Amanda Narciso rocks the swimsuit competition.

Amanda Narciso rocks the swimsuit competition.

“It puts them in one-on-one friendships with people who do not have special needs, in order for them to become more social, find jobs, and become a part of the community,” she said. “I’d also like to work this year on helping Children’s Miracle Network Hosptials [the Miss America Organization’s national platform] and to do well at Miss America for Massachusetts.

Narciso added that she’s excited to be going to Atlantic City in September.

“I cannot wait,” she said. “I’ve never been to the AC, and I am so excited to help bring commerce back to a place ravaged by the hurricane and just to be on the boardwalk and enjoy the sunshine.”

When she emerged at the reception after the pageant, Narciso thanked as many people as she could who have stuck with her for all of her years of competition.

Amanda Narciso performed a tap number that reminded some of Miss America Mallory Hagan.

Amanda Narciso performed a tap number that reminded some of Miss America Mallory Hagan.

“I feel like this is a win for so many of us,” she said. “You have all watched me grow up. Now, five years later, her I am.”

She said her local business manager, Maureen Whalen, had given her an inspirational book, which she had read before going into her interview on the Thursday before the final competition.

“There was a quote in there that said, ‘A dream come true is a tough little wish that doesn’t take no for an answer,’” Narciso said. “That is me to a ‘T.’ It happened. Dreams come true, and I’m here.”

The moment Amanda Narciso learns that five years of hard work has finally paid off.

The moment Amanda Narciso learns that five years of hard work has finally paid off.

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