Olivia Mayo of Minot represents Maine in Miss America 2.0

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MINOT — After being in the children’s ensemble choir at age 5 for “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” at Community Little Theatre, Olivia Mayo was hooked on dancing and performing, according to her mother.

The 21-year-old Minot native, competing in only her third pageant, will represent Maine on Sunday in Miss America 2.0, the Miss America Organization’s new, swimsuitless competition. It airs live at 9 p.m. Sunday on ABC.

Karen Martin, Olivia’s mother, said Wednesday her daughter has been in Atlantic City preparing with 50 other contestants since last Tuesday.

“Today, she had a one-on-one interview with the judging panel,” Martin said. “Tonight, she does evening gown. Tomorrow, she does vocals and then Friday she’ll do a final onstage interview.

“It’s interesting how the process works,” Martin said. “They’ve been doing a lot of appearances, and a lot of things that really kind of warm them up to everything they need to do for the job.”

Mayo, a 2015 Saint Dominic Academy graduate, grew up performing in local theater. Four years ago, she competed in Miss Maine’s Outstanding Teen, her first experience with a pageant.

Earlier this year, friends encouraged her to compete in Miss Maine, Martin said. She was crowned in June out of a field of five women.

“We always knew that she could do it, but usually the first time is not how that works,” Martin said. “(She) went for it and won, so now we’re here in Atlantic City.”

Mayo is a communications and media major at the University of Southern Maine. Her Miss Maine platform is “Love Doesn’t Hurt,” and she has been raising money for domestic violence awareness.

Martin said her daughter has an outgoing personality.

“(The pageant) is very service- and community- and volunteer-focused, which is something she’s actually been doing for quite a while,” Martin said.

“I’m going to see her tonight for the first time onstage because she has her evening gown (preliminary competition). It’ll be pretty breathtaking. It’ll be surreal.”

Wes Thames, executive director of the Miss Maine Scholarship Program, said all 51 contestants will take the stage Sunday night. About 15 minutes into the live broadcast, the top 15 contestants will be selected to compete in the finals, based on preliminary judging results.

“The closer you get to doing your talent and your interview, the more nerves you have,” Thames said. “She handles it very well. She’s a performer.

“We’re one of the smallest pageant states. I love her odds. Every year, we hope for the best.”

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Minot native Olivia Mayo, crowned Miss Maine in June, will compete in Miss America 2.0 on Sunday, the revamped, swimsuitless Miss America Organization competition. (Submitted photo)

Minot native Olivia Mayo, crowned Miss Maine in June, will compete in Miss America 2.0 on Sunday, the revamped, swimsuitless Miss America Organization competition. (Submitted photo)

Minot native Olivia Mayo, crowned Miss Maine in June, will compete in Miss America 2.0 on Sunday, the revamped, swimsuitless Miss America Organization competition. (Submitted photo)

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