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Aug 30, 2000

Contestants prepare for Queen of the Bay

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It wouldn’t be September without the Queen of the Bay and this year’s pageant will be ready to roll on the first night of the month. News Five’s Jose Sanchez has a preview.

Jose Sanchez, Reporting

With qualifications such as being tall and stately like a mahogany, pure as a Belizean mountain stream, sweet like sugar cane, slim like a pine tree and strong and healthy like bananas and oranges; the Queen of the Bay pageant, has not changed much in its 54 years of existence. This week the contestants have been spending most of their time practicing in preparation for the traditional pageant.

Contestant #1

“My name is Vicky Gonzalez, and I’m proudly representing the beautiful district of Cayo and I’m sponsored by the September Celebrations Committee.”

Contestant #2

“My name is Stephanie Young. I’m nineteen years old, and I’m proudly representing the beautiful village of Sandhill. My sponsors are the Sandhill Village Council.”

Contestant #3

“Hello, my name is Sherigne Rodriguez and I’m a nineteen year old student, representing the lovely village of Ladyville and I’m sponsored by the Ladyville Village Council.”

Contestant #4

“Hi, my name is Shawn Pacheco and I’m representing Caribbean Shores. My sponsor is Jose Coye and I’m nineteen years old.”

Pageant Organizer, Emma Boiton, believes that the girls are excellent representatives of the type of vibrant young ladies that the originators of the pageant had in mind. The pageant was created in 1946, when Guatemala’s claim over Belize was at an all time high. Roderick Pitts, one of the pageant’s developers, used this issue to create the Queen of the Bay, to try and stop Guatemala’s claim over Belize.

Emma Boiton, Pageant Organizer

“She is supposed to reign over the hearts of the bay with her crown. With her cloak, she is supposed to warm the hearts of the bay. With her scepter she is to rule over the hearts of the Bay. But the central part of it is, She is the emblem of our freedom. She is the emblem of a free Belize; a free and democratic Belize.”

While Boiton is trying to secure a piece of land as a prize for the competition, the Queen Designate will win a degreed scholarship to the University of Belize, a round trip ticket from Continental Airlines, one thousand dollars from the September Celebrations Committee, a cocktail diamond ring from JL’s Quickloan, and a two hundred dollar gift certificate from Mapye’s. She will also get a painting from the Image Factory and numerous other items. And while the list of prizes grows, so too grow the friendships between the participants.

Miss Albert, Nellie Sosa

“I feel this to be a learning experience because I’m meeting new people and making new friends. The people I’m with are very nice and I hope this turns out to be wonderful, and that we have a nice turn out.”

Miss Port Loyola, Racqkeem Gotoy

“It feels very good. I’m very excited and enthused about the whole event, this week. I’m just trying to enjoy myself. I’m looking forward to a great pageant on Friday.”

Miss Corozal, Terrilyn Humes

“I’m very, very nervous. The days are coming closer to the pageant, but it’s very nice. They treat me like, I’m a part of their family and I feel quite nice about it.”

Emma Boiton

“The girls should be the best of Belize because they should represent the best of what Belize is.”

All Candidates

“Candidates for 2000-2001. We hope to see you there.”

Reporting for News Five, I am Jose Sanchez.

The fifty-fourth annual Queen of the Bay pageant is scheduled to start promptly at 7:00 p.m. on Friday and Boiton promises there will be no gaps between entertainment and pageant segments.

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