Below are photos from the 2004 Miss Kentucky pageant. Photos are courtesy of the Miss Kentucky Pageant.
Pictured above is Miss Pride of the South, Annie Cruse, after winning the Preliminary Talent
Award at the Miss Kentucky Pageant. She is pictured with the Preliminary Swimsuit Winner, Lauren Gibbs, Miss Heart of
the Parks (left) and MacKenzie Mayes, Miss Kentucky 2003 (center).
Maria Maldonado, Miss Heart of the South, being crowned Miss Kentucky 2004 by Miss Kentucky 2003,
MacKenzie Mayes and congratulated by state director, Jamie Breeding.
Maria walks the runway as the new Miss Kentucky after receiving the keys to her brand new Ford
Explorer as part of her Miss Kentucky prize package.
Top 5 at the Miss Kentucky Pageant (from left to right): 4th runner-up, Miss Richmond Area, Amber Jones; 2nd
runner-up, Miss Louisville, Erin Bentley; Miss Kentucky 2004, Maria Maldonado, formerly Miss Heart of the South; 1st runner-up,
Annie Cruse, Miss Pride of the South; 3rd runner-up, Lauren Gibbs, Miss Heart of the Parks. Coincidentally the top 4 finalists
in the Miss Kentucky pageant were all contestants in last year's Miss Heart of the South/Miss Pride of the South pageant
and Amber Jones was the first Miss Heart of the South in 2001.
Maria is joined by her family. From left to right: older brother Rick, mother Diana, Maria, father Ramon
and younger brother Juan.
Maria is pictured above with the Miss Kentucky panel of judges and Judges' Chair, Dan Ellis (far right), who was
also the director of the Miss Kentucky Teen pageant when Maria was Miss Kentucky Teen in 1999.
Maria joins the Miss Kentucky sisterhood. Pictured above are former Miss Kentucky's (from left to right):
Marcia Bell (1978), Heather French (1999/Miss America 2000), Whitney Boyles (2000), Monica Hardin (2001), Maria (2004), MacKenzie
Mayes (2003), Dottye Nuckols (1951), Elizabeth McDowell (1987), Tonya Virgin (1993), Chera-Lyn Cook (1999) and Melanie
Miss Kentucky 2004, next stop Atlantic City!