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Aug 31, 2007

Eight women to vie for Queen of the Bay crown

Story PictureFor many Belizeans, the September celebrations officially start with the coronation of her graciousness the Queen of the Bay. Today the candidates vying for the title introduced themselves to News Five’s Janelle Chanona.

Emma Boiton, Organizer
“This is a patriotic pageant, if it were just a beauty contest I wouldn’t be here.”

Janelle Chanona, Reporting
On Saturday night, eight young ladies will take centre stage to compete in the annual Queen of the Bay pageant.

Sharima Lizama, Miss Pickstock
“When I was small I always saw the pageant and I wanted to take part of it. My sister and my aunt take part of the pageant also and they both came in second. So they told me ‘Shar, it’s your turn’. So I hope I bring home the crown this time.”

Seydi Torres, Miss Corozal
“I’m going to be doing a dance.”

Janelle Chanona
“And it’s hard because it’s a hard dance or because you’re going to be in front of all those people?”

Seydi Torres
“Well, I know how to dance, but I’m not a good dancer and I’ve noticed that the girls have a lot of talent; so there is a lot of competition.”

Janelle Chanona
“Are you scared about being up there in front of all those people?”

Rashida Bethran, Miss Sand Hill
“Yes I am. I’m kind of a shaky but I guess it will be only for the first and I’ll get used to the crowd and everything.”

Ronnie Coye, Miss Belmopan
“Oh, I love pageant. I think it’s the only way you can show your intelligence, your beauty, inner beauty and outside beauty, you’re your talent.”

Janine Lopez, Queen of the West
“It’s not all competition. Yes, I’d love to win, but you know what, despite it, at the end of the day we’re all winners. And yes I think I have made seven new friends, counting the chaperones too, add them too. Their friends now.” [ends laughing]

Cordelia Vernon, Miss Caribbean Sea
“The toughest part is the curtsey. It kinda hurts in your leg but I shall overcome it cause I’m a dancer and I do squats.”

Shaneka Gill, Miss Belize City
“Come out early because the tickets I think, will sellout. So come early, get your tickets early and just help in promoting Queen of the Bay.”

For veteran organizer Emma Boiton, the event should inspire all Belizeans to be patriotic.

Emma Boiton
“People should come to witness it, to bear witness that we have selected the sixty-second queen who is the emblem of our freedom. As the song says ‘All those who fought bravely and died’, they are present at the coronation of the queen. She was supposed to be as tall as a pine tree, graceful like a Mahogany tree, sweet as our oranges, pure as our waters. So she was supposed to be a part of Belize. She’s supposed to be Belize…personified.”

Charnela Sampson, Miss Caribbean Shipping
“Queen of the Bay is not really a beauty pageant right, but it’s a respectable pageant for a young lady to enter. And if you enter something like this, you get a little fame you know. People will see you as a respectable young lady, and not only about wanting to be a beauty person, but somebody that has deep roots within them.”

Janelle Chanona
“So what’s your advice to the candidates in this year’s…?”

Shadene Ottley, Queen of the Bay 2006/2007
“My advice to the candidates is to be strong, stay firm and be all that they can be in life.”

The sixty-second Queen of the Bay pageant is set to start at seven Saturday night at the Belize City Centre. Reporting for News Five, I am Janelle Chanona.

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