Nicole Rash is not like the other girls. Really.
For starters, Miss Indiana has her motorcycle license, likes to camp and is fluent in Spanish. (She was an exchange student to both Bolivia and Chile.)
"I can get my hands dirty. It's not like I'm a prim, proper debutante who sits in the house all day," the 2003 Plymouth High School graduate says.
And if you don't believe she's not a "big-haired, pageant girl," you'll get a chance to get to know her on the Miss America Pageant's "Reality Check" series, starting at 10 p.m. Friday on TLC.
"It's really fun," the 23-year-old Rash says. "We had a lot of fun with it. There's some drama with it."
For the series, she says, all state titleholders were housed in the Hollywood home where "The Biggest Loser" was filmed.
No TV, no music and no Internet.
"It's a really, really gorgeous, huge property -- a really nice house," Rash says, "but for 52 girls, we had seven bathrooms."
Contestants are presented with challenges, she says, and Hollywood icons show up with tips about how to be the next "It Girl."
"We're just trying to appeal to when Miss America was at its highest point," Rash says. "When little girls wanted to be Miss America."
Rash notes that a woman can be relevant, fashionable and pretty but not have to get into the trouble of Paris Hilton and Lindsay Lohan to make headlines.
She works with the Children's Miracle Network, which is the national platform of the pageant and is affiliated with Indianapolis' Riley Hospital for Children.
As the Las Vegas pageant date looms, you can find Miss Indiana substitute teaching in the Plymouth school system. The daughter of Bill and Cindy Rash, longtime LaPaz/Plymouth residents, Rash's personal platform is "breaking down language barriers."
"Miss America is so much more than just about the pageant," she says.
But don't worry boys: Rash says there will be swimsuits in the reality show.
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