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Posted: June 23, 2014

Cranbrook teen vying for the Miss BC title

Jacqueline Potter hopes to put Cranbrook on the provincial map as she is among 50 hopefuls from across the province competing for the Mrs., Miss and Teen BC crowns.

And when the competition gets underway, you can play a role in helping her win.

Jacqueline Potter
Jacqueline Potter

This the first year Cranbrook will be represented in this, the largest pageant in British Columbia. The pageant will be broadcast on Shaw Television later this fall.

The Miss BC, Teen BC and Mrs. BC Pageant prides itself in its uniqueness in the Pageant world. The program is a development program for young women and, for the fourth year in a row, now has a category for married women, the Mrs. BC Pageant.

“I see no reason why marriage should end someone’s pageant opportunities,” says creator and producer Darren Storsley.

All previous rules that may discriminate against women in pageants have also been lifted. Unlike other pageants, there is not a long list of rules that make many women ineligible. For example, there is not a maximum age limit to participate, nor are there height and weight requirements.

Also, among the contestants are ladies who are single parents. This year’s roster of contestants even includes a young lady who is a former competitor in the Special Olympics as well as a contestant with autism.

“The Miss BC Pageant celebrates all women, and yes, we would welcome transgendered contestants,” says Storsley, who himself was Mr. World Canada 2007.

Leading up to the final pageant, all contestants receive professional training in areas such as public speaking, interview skills, media relations, modeling, manners, etiquette, leadership, self-esteem, health, fitness, nutrition, assertiveness and motivational speaking, and even self-defense.

“These skills will help all the contestants, whether or not they are chosen as the new Miss, Miss Teen or Mrs. BC,” explained director Storsley. “The next Miss BC, Miss Teen BC and Mrs. BC will attend various functions across the province and need to possess the skills these workshops offer; however, these are skills that are important in any environment. “This is not a beauty pageant. It will be a well-rounded, intelligent, outgoing and well-spoken young lady who will win the crown, not necessarily the most beautiful girl.”

The contestants compete in a private judge’s interview, an on-stage interview, a sportswear presentation, an evening gown presentation, a sponsor costume introduction as well as in charity fundraising.

The charity of the Miss BC Pageant is the Cops for Cancer Tour of the Canadian Cancer Society. Since 2007, the Miss BC Pageant has raised over $200 000.00 for the Cops for Cancer Tour.

Most contestants choose to do fundraisers for Cops for Cancer leading up to the pageant.

Storsley explained that the best part of the whole program is the support they can provide for kids who have cancer. “Through this event we can send some of those kids to Camp Goodtimes. It is very emotional when the contestants meet these children they have been fundraising for and the police officers who ride the tour. This is all about reaching out to the community and this pageant is an excellent example of this.”

Over the last 12 years, many contestants and winners of the Miss, Mrs. and Miss Teen BC title have gone on to make a difference in the province and beyond.

Tara Teng of Langley, Miss BC 2010, used her title to create awareness around the issue of human trafficking. She met with the Prime Minister to discuss Canada’s role in this and has since travelled the world making presentations to different government agencies and set up events worldwide to create awareness.

Sandra Gin of Richmond, Miss BC 2009, created the ‘Calendar of Hope’ as a fundraising project for the Canadian Cancer Society. Natalie Standke of Kamloops, Miss BC 2006, dedicated her year to cancer awareness due to personal family experiences. Sasha Abadundai of Abbotsford, Miss BC 2005, dedicated her year to promote blood donation and signed up over 1,000 names to donate blood regularly. Eight years later, these people are still giving blood due to her outreach.

Alex Keizer, Miss Teen BC 2006, created a presentation called ‘Words that Hurt’ that focuses on bullying in school and has travelled across the province presenting this to various schools. Meghan Price, the Teen winner in 2009 has done various excursions for Habitat for Humanity and has helped in building wells, homes and schools in developing nations.

Storsley is proud of the road this pageant has travelled and the paths it has crossed. “In the end, it is about giving back, reaching out, creating leaders and providing a venue for women to take leadership roles across B.C.”

The Miss, Mrs. and Miss Teen BC Pageant is already conducting interviews for the 2015 pageant. Any interested applicants can visit the website and apply on line at www.missbc.ca

The public is invited to log on and vote for their favourite contestant for the People’s Choice award at www.missbc.ca.

The public is also invited to the Miss BC Talent and Presentation night on Saturday, June 28 at 6 p.m. at the Chief Sepass Theatre in Fort Langley, as well as to the final show and crowning of Miss, Miss Teen and Mrs. BC on Monday, June 30 at 7 p.m. at the Chief Sepass Theatre.

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