Contestants hope to bring not only the crown, but the pride of Abbotsford to this year's Miss, Miss Teen and Mrs. BC Pageant. Through the pageant, contestants will be the voice for their community and participate in fundraising for many local charities. The pageant will take place July 3 to 5 at the Chief Sepass Theatre in Fort Langley and can be seen on Shaw Television later this fall.
What makes this pageant different from others is that all previous rules that may have discriminated against women in pageants have been lifted. There is not a maximum age limit to participate, nor are there height and weight requirements. Also, among the contestants are women who are single parents.
This year’s roster of contestants from Abbotsford includes, Aleshia Mund, Annalise Gardner, Becca Toews, Carrisa Neville, Jasmine Brar, and Sonia Khumna.
The pageant prides itself in its recognition of diversity amongst women and acceptance for the transgendered community. It acts as a developmental program for young women and even has a category for married women, the Mrs. BC Pageant.
Leading up to the final pageant, all contestants receive professional training in areas such as public speaking, interview skills, media relations, modelling, manners, etiquette, leadership, self-esteem, health, fitness, nutrition, assertiveness and motivational speaking, and even self-defence.
The contestants compete in a private judge's interview, an on-stage interview, a sportswear presentation, an evening gown presentation, and a sponsor costume introduction. The contestants are also required to participate in charity fundraising.
The charity for the Miss BC Pageant is the Cops for Cancer Tour of the Canadian Cancer Society. Since 2007, the Miss BC Pageant has raised over $225,000 for the cause.
The public is invited to log on and vote for their favourite contestant for the People’s Choice award at www.missbc.ca. The Miss BC Talent and presentation night is July 3 at 6 p.m. at the Chief Sepass Theatre. The final show and crowning of Miss, Miss Teen, and Mrs. BC is on July 5 at 6:30 p.m. and tickets are available at the door.