Monday evening marked another step on the road to crowning the next carnival queen as the sponsors of the seven contestants were finally unveiled at a ‘Sashing Ceremony,’ held at Alliance Francaise in Point Seraphine.
In her welcoming remarks, National Carnival Committee Chairperson Michelle Monrose, acknowledged the difficulty in securing sponsorship as the island faces challenging economic conditions and praised those who stepped up to the plate for their commitment.
“The same sponsorship which we may have taken for granted a few years ago is now difficult to come by and much appreciated. We are therefore very grateful for the trust and confidence, which the sponsors have placed, in our Queen Show Committee and the quality of contestants that we have presented this year. And what better way for sponsors to register their approval than by ensuring that tonight all seven contestants are fully sponsored,” she said.
Monrose was also pleased by the strides being made in ensuring that this year’s pageant process got off to a smooth start.
“We made a lot of progress in achieving a much earlier start to the planning and preparation for this year’s contestants. The selection process was completed a full two months earlier which enabled the first public appearance of the contestants at the launching of the Jazz and Arts Festival. This improved state of readiness has resulted in more grooming, training, and tutoring of the young ladies contesting the 2013 Carnival Queen title.” She added: “In this way we are certain that we will not only put together an excellent show on the night but also produce a cadre of young women who have developed in all aspects of life due to their association with the queen show process. We are again committed to producing an entertaining show filled with pleasant surprises.”
The young ladies’ torturous wait finally came to an end as the pairings were announced. Vieux-Fort native Jamara Smith can now be referred to as Miss Piton. Zena Kizzy
George from Dennery is teamed up with Sadoo and Sons. Seriah John of Ti Colon drew Blue Waters St Lucia Ltd. Anse La Raye’s Amy Stephen is Miss St Lucia Tourist Board. Reigning Vieux-Fort Carnival Queen, J’aimee Joseph is now Miss Baron Foods. Macy Brisfere from Bexon is partnered with last year’s winning sponsor, Super J. And rounding out the group is Michelle St Clair sponsored by Digicel.
Minister of Tourism, Heritage and Creative Industries, Lorne Theophilus, was in attendance took the opportunity to once again thank the sponsors and express his pleasure with the direction carnival is taking.
“I am pleased with the developments I am seeing concerning Carnival this year. Despite all of the excitement, all of the drama that is associated every year with carnival for years and beyond I’m pleased to see that things are shaping up to where we’d like them
to be and I’m looking forward in a very serious way to this pageant,” the Minister stated. Theophilus also had a message for the beauties vying for this year’s crown: soak it all in.
“I want to wish you all the best and what I would like to tell you is that it is an experience that we want you to go out and enjoy. Represent your sponsors well but at the same time represent yourself well,” he said then continued, “Go out, take the experiences that you had to build up to this show. Make it an experience that generations from now you will continue to tell them look, ‘This is a very special experience for
me, one that helped to shape my life in a tremendous way.’ The things that you
have learnt in the course of preparing for this show I ask you to impose them on your life and allow it to make you a better person in the long run.”
The National Carnival Queen Pageant is scheduled for Saturday, June 29 at 8 pm at the National Cultural Center. Tickets are $65.