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Aug 29, 2001

13 go for Queen of the Bay crown

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One highlight of the National Celebrations has always been the Queen of the Bay Pageant. This year there is no shortage of contestants, with thirteen young women dying to walk off the stage with the crown. The ladies will spend the rest of the week making final preparations for the big night. News 5′s Ann Marie Williams stopped by the Bliss Institute this afternoon to find out how the practice sessions were going.

Stephanie Young, Reigning Queen

“It has been a great experience. I have been invited to a lot of different function where I had the opportunity to meet a lot of different people. One was that I was invited when Princess Ann came. I was also on the Taiwanese ship. These are once in a lifetime things.”

Ann-Marie Williams, Reporting

And it’s that once in a lifetime thing that thirteen Belizean young women from all over the country are hoping to capture. It’s the fifty-fifth annual Queen of the Bay Pageant on Saturday at the Belize City Centre and final preparations are underway for the grand night.

One contestant who’s looking forward to the event is nineteen year old Kovenka Rodriguez. No stranger to pageants, she’s won Miss S.J.C. and placed second for Miss Campus Darling.

Kovenka Rodriguez

“To meet new people and it’s a prestigious title I would like to win. I’m anxious actually. I’m kind of nervous, but hopefully that will go by the time I see the crowd.”

Silvia Jones, who was the first runner-up in the Miss Cayo pageant, is giving it a second try. Hopefully, this is her chance to make good.

Silvia Jones

“I am hoping to be my best and do my best, and leave the rest to God and the judge.”

And the judges will be vigilant when contestants appear in the swimsuit competition, evening gown and a dance. There will also be a question and answer segment and the traditional curtsy.

Ritamae Hyde

“The Queen of the Bay Pageant is a prestigious event. I felt that I needed to express a sense of nationality, of my history, and that I’m proud to be a Belizean.”

For nineteen year old Karena York, competing in the show has been her childhood dream.

Karena York

“I entered the pageant because it was a new experience I wanted to behold ever since I was a child.”

Ann-Marie Williams.

“Feminists outlawed particularly the Miss World Pageant, saying that it’s not representative of what a woman should be in the 21st Century. What are your thoughts?”

Stephanie Young

“It is what a woman should be in the 21st Century because the Queen of the Bay signifies grace, poise, eloquence, and this is what women should be all about. Women should be able to express themselves freely without having somebody else to say “you’re not supposed to do that.” Who can tell you what you’re not supposed to do, we are all free in that sense; you make you choices.”

A choice that thirteen young women have made to try to become the new Queen of the Bay. Ann-Marie Williams for News 5.

You can get your ticket for the show at Record Shack.

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