25 girls throughout The Garden State have invaded Ocean City in the hope they will be crowned Miss New Jersey, and take one step toward becoming Miss America.

Tonight is the first night of the competition at the Ocean City Music Pier, and by know the nerves are kicking in.  The chance to represent New Jersey for the next year is an honor with responsibilities, and rewards in the form of scholarships.

The Miss New Jersey Pageant is in Ocean City for the 17th straight year, and the pageant still features the entertaining talent competition, the interview segment, along with the swimsuit and evening gown phases.

The top ten girls will be revealed on Saturday, and by the end of the night Miss New Jersey 2011 Katharyn Nicolle will relinquish her crown and pass the torch to the eventual winner.  Miss NJ 2012 will then have a spot in the Miss America Pageant in January at the Theater for the Performing Arts along the Las Vegas strip.  ABC is slated to broadcast the pageant.