Alyssa Howell Crowned Miss Nebraska 2015

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NORTH PLATTE, Neb.-- An Omaha woman has been named Miss Nebraska. Alyssa Howell won the title Saturday night in North Platte.

Howell, who went into the pageant as Miss Douglas County, also won a talent award early in the competition with her piano performance.

Howell won a $10,000 scholarship with the title, and she will represent Nebraska in the national competition.

Miss Crane Festival Allison Tietjen of Chester was named the first runner-up.

The Miss Nebraska Pageant has been in north Platte for 30 years. The scholarship competition looks for the most eligible representative for the state, beauty, brains and even community service plays a large role in the pageant.

"Community service plays a large part in our pageant system, the girls go out and volunteer and visits hospitals, visit children, they might go build and paint for habitat for humanity, whatever they are passionate about," said Pageant Director, Jay Engel.

The Miss Nebraska pageant has an entirely separate award for community service.

"Every girl has a platform or form of community service and a separate panel of judges gets together and select five girls who they feel have put an exceptional amount of time and effort into their platform statement," Engel said.

The winner of the Community Service Award was Allison Tietjen, and that kicked off the start of competition. The next few days were filled with the four primary parts of competition, swimsuit and evening wear modeling, talent, and on stage interviews.

At the end of the week of competition, Alyssa Howell won the talent and interview scholarships, and the new Miss Nebraska she already looks to the future.

"It is just an amazing experience, being able to go across the state and promote my platform, promote the national platform of the Miss America across the country," Howell said.

And Alyssa takes pride in her philanthropy.

"My platform is called making miracles happen, it is through the miracle bag program, so I have bags of donations that I bring to the hospital and deliver them to kids and make them smile," said Howell. "They love having a girl with a crown and a bag of goodies walk in."

Allison Tietjen is the first runner up for the competition, and is awarded $3,000 in scholarship money, and if for some reason, Howell is unable to perform her Miss Nebraska duties, Tietjen will step in.