As a veteran of full figured pageantry for over two years, I have always been open minded to trying out for new pageants around the United States, so when I came across American Beauties Plus, I was enthusiastic--at least at first.
There is an entry fee of $550.00 to enter the pageant before receiving your crown/banner. In addition, contestants are required to sell advertisements in the pageant's program book, for another fee per page. There are also optionals which consist of talent, portfolio, photogenic, etc, along with a Calendar Girl contest, and additional fees for travel expenses, meals for guests, and the like, which I thought nothing about, since this is standard procedure for a lot of pageants.
However, after looking into this further, I not only began to find these fees quite exorbitant in comparison to some of the pageants I have participated in the past of the same--if not better--quality, but also find it disturbing that all fees must be made out to the director, Mrs. Angela Howell, rather than the pageant company itself. I also find it disturbing that a home address is listed for the pageant as well as a personal PayPal account rather than a professional office/account.
In addition, I recently communicated with two other people that, after paying fees, this pageant wanted even MORE money from them! Then, wouldn't you know after coming on here to do a search, I find a report dated March 19, 2007 by a former contestant that the results had been predetermined and rigged anyway!
Ladies, especially those full figured, PLEASE do your research before entering pageants, especially via the Internet. LEGIT pageants usually follow these procedures:
1. They have an OFFICE or a PO box designated for pageant-related business only.
2. They have their PayPal/eBay accounts set up for pageant-related business accounts only. NEVER personal ones!
3. NEVER send anything made out to the director or anyone else! Make it out to the pageant itself, especially certified checks and money orders! Otherwise, it has RIP OFF written all over it!
4. If they ask for more money outside of the fees printed on the site, DON'T DO IT!
5. DON'T SIGN ANYTHING if you are in doubt.
And especially, stay away from THIS pageant! These people are money-grubbing, con artists to the bone!