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Bert Parks

If you go: Miss America Pageant highlights

Many public events leading up to the pageant are free. Tickets are required to attend the pageant and are sold in a package, which also includes the three-night preliminaries, ranging from $110 to $220. Here are some highlights:

The "Show Us Your Shoes" parade, Sept. 14 on the boardwalk, is free to bystanders, but reserved-seat tickets are $20. The event showcases floats, marching bands, musical performances and, of course, the Miss America contestants parading in an extraordinary collection of chic and silly shoes: haute-couture high-heels, flip-flops, glitzy sneakers, even bedroom slippers.

Take a self-guided "Road To The...