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Eight Belizean Beauties…One Title

Eight Belizean Beauties…One Title
July 12
12:50 2019

Friday, July 12th. 2019 –

Plans to get the 2019 Miss Universe Belize Pageant underway have already commenced and last Friday the organizers introduced the eight Belizean, beauties that are vying for the prestigious title on September 6th.

The contestants are Destiny Wagner, 23 who hails from Punta Gorda; Vivian Noralez, 20, from San Pedro; Destinee Arnold, 26, from Roaring Creek Village, along with Belize City residents Aarti Sooknandan, 24, Ryeann Smith, 19, Tianney Lamb, 21, Markeisha Young, 19 and Josselyn Cerin, 25.

This year the pageant is spearheaded by the national director for the Miss Universe Belize Organization, Romeo Escobar. Escobar explained that the chosen contestants all met the requirements set forth by the Miss Universe Organization which stipulates that contestants must be between the age of 18-28, must hold a Belizean passport, have never been married or given birth, and have never committed a crime or served any jail time.

Escobar told the Reporter that the eight females were chosen as the best from out of the group that auditioned. He explained that one of the challenges faced by the committee when choosing contestants is the contestant’s lack of self-confidence which is rooted in their belief that because of their lack of experience in pageantry they would not be taken seriously on the international stage.

Nevertheless, Escobar said that the organization is doing its best to ensure that the country has good representation on the international platform which is beneficial both to the country and the individual. The organization is also trying to change the perception that some Belizeans have about beauty pageants, something Escobar says has an effect on the final outcome abroad.

“It is very important that the entire country supports our winner, regardless of who she is or whether she is your favorite or not. Because that is the only way that the Miss Universe Organization will pay attention to us. If they see a lot of negative response, and if they see a lot of hate towards our queen they will dismiss us and will not pay us any mind. The only way that we will be successful at the pageant is if all of Belize gets together and supports our queen regardless of who she is. Miss Universe wants to work with countries that support their queen,” Escobar told this newspaper.

Another challenge the Miss Universe Belize Organization faces is the lack of funding. Escobar said that having a contestant participate in the pageant is a very pricey venture and although there are some sponsors the organization can use additional support from any other interested parties.

“Most of our resources in funding a pageant like this comes from our sponsors or even from my own pocket, but it’s something that I am passionate about and so I do it. I would hope that we would have more support from sponsors and also from the Government. People might ask why it is important that we follow the tradition. Well I will say to them that the Miss Universe pageant is one of the biggest platforms that any country has to promote tourism. The yearly event is broadcast around the world and is seen by over a billion people and so it doesn’t get bigger than that,” he said.

Escobar says that training for beauty contestants is lacking in Belize since many other countries have the resources to train and prepare young contestants from the onset. Escobar says that while that will take a lot of time and resources to get done in Belize he hopes that the country can someday have an institution dedicated to the training and grooming of young beauty delegates from an early age.

The national director told the Reporter that the next Miss Universe Belize delegate will get as much international press exposure and training as needed. She will also meet with influential people from the Miss Universe Headquarters and meet with the committee members prior to the pageant to familiarize herself with the relevant personnel.

Last year, according to Escobar, reigning Miss Belize Jenelle Frazier trained with two previous Miss USAs, she had a meet and greet session with pageant host Steve Harvey and even met with the committee at the Miss Universe Headquarters as well as other influential people abroad.

The Miss Universe Belize Pageant will start at 8:30pm on September 6th at the Belize Civic Center. Tickets are currently on sale at all Pink Boutiques countrywide as well as the Belize Civic Center booth. General admission is $25, reserved is $50 and VIP tickets are $75.

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