Local Aspires to be Miss USA

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 Ciara Romero is hoping to be the next Miss USA. But first the local resident needs a little help to get there.

On April 24, Miss New York candidate Ciara Romero will be heading to Seneca Falls, NY for orientation. By that date, she needs to raise $1,495 in order to compete in the pageant, being held June 2-4 in Niagara Falls. After going through a tough time with a cancer diagnosis last year, Romero is hoping to make it all the way to the crown so she can help pay it forward to those who helped her along the way.

“Every day above ground is a true blessing. In August I was diagnosed with a rare cancer called Appendiceal Neuroendocrine tumor in my appendix. What began as appendicitis turned into two major surgeries back to back. While recovering in the hospital, I saw so much devastation that not only the pandemic was causing, but how depleting cancer can be to  a person’s body. Since then, it is super important to me that I give back to those hospitals, nurses, doctors and patients that were by my side when I was very close to dying myself,” Romero said. Through her cancer battle, she spent five months going through the Northwell Health system. During her last PET scan in October, she got the good news—she was cancer free. Now Romero hopes to pay it forward to those who helped her get there.

This isn’t Romero’s first time entering a pageant, but it is her last opportunity. “In 2007, I did a Miss Teen USA pageant, where I won first runner up,” she said. “This is my last year I’m able to compete in a pageant since I’m 27, which is the cutoff age. That’s why I’m really motivated to make it happen this year. It’s now or nothing.”

As a candidate, Romero will be running on a platform supporting the social cause of climate change and its impact on agriculture, as well as rising sea levels. After reading many articles on the subject, she realized the importance of raising more awareness. “I think it’s really important that we not only maintain our health as human beings, but for the planet. On the side of agriculture, we saw a shortage not only because of the pandemic, but we had shortages of vegetables and fruits in our farmers markets and it’s important for me to take a stand on this and make it known and heard,” Romero said.

Staying healthy, especially in the wake of her cancer recovery, is of utmost importance to Romero. After leaving the hospital, she had a major Vitamin D deficiency. To help address it in a natural way, she discovered solar running. “It’s when you look at the solar vortex and the way the earth is angled toward the sun and the way it’s projected. It’s physically running and walking at certain times of the day, when the sun is at its peak between 12 p.m. and 2 p.m., the perfect time to absorb the sun for your skin, body, hair and more. That’s how I ended up gaining and maintaining my Vitamin D,” she said. As something that also helps relieve stress, skin issues and other underlying conditions, solar running has become something that Romero actively shares with her friends, family and community.

Wanting to give back to her community is a big reason for Romero entering the pageant. The St. Camillus and Scholars’ Academy alum says, “I would love to give back to the community I was raised in.”

In order to compete in the pageant, Romero must receive sponsorships or donations to raise the $1,495 fee by April 22. If you’d like to help her reach her goal, send her an email at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or reach out to her on social media at Ciara Romero on Facebook or ceethesunflower_1121 on Instagram.

 By Katie McFadden

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