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The next Miss Universe Bahamas is...

Pageant officials say judges will have a tough decision during weekend finale
  • The current Miss Bahamas Universe Celeste Marshall will pass on her crown on Sunday night.

  • Top left to right: Taisha-Monet Smellie, Rochelle Alexandre, Shanae Strachan, Crystal Glinton. Bottom left to right: Tavette Darville, Chantel O'Brian, Vandia Sands and Lexi Wilson.

Guardian Lifestyles Editor

Published: Sep 06, 2013

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In just three days, the name of the young lady to be crowned the country’s next beauty ambassador and wear the crown of Miss Universe Bahamas for the next year will be known. With eight strong contenders, pageant Vice-President of Media Relations Jerome Sawyer says judges will have a tough time coming up with the lady that will be the one.

As the eight young ladies — Rochelle Alexandre, Tavette Darville, Crystal Glinton, Chantel O’Brian, Vandia Sands, Taisha-Monet Smellie, Shanae Strachan and Lexi Wilson — take to the stage for Sunday’s finale in the Atlantis Theatre, Sawyer said the strength of this year’s delegates will make for one of the most exciting shows audiences would have seen in years.

“The field of young ladies is exceptional,” said Sawyer. “You’re going to see a high level of competition from them. It will be a very tough call for the judges.”

The field of eight will compete on stage in evening gown and in swimsuit, before the field is cut to the final four from which the winner will be chosen. The Bahamian public has the opportunity to ensure that their favorite young lady advances to the final four by voting online at missuniversebahamas.org. The young lady with the largest amount of votes will automatically advance through to the top four. Online voting closes one hour before the pageant.

From the competitive field of girls, to the great show being planned, the pageant committee is working in conjunction with Atlantis to produce the show, and Sawyer said the audience will see a great pageant.

“We think that people are really going to enjoy the quality of the show… they’re going to enjoy the caliber of young ladies, people are going to be impressed with the caliber of the answers they hear on stage… they’re going to be impressed with the caliber of the competition,” he said. “The girls have been practicing for a long time, so they’re really getting their walks together and their presentations and they have some fantastic dresses and great bodies in swimsuit, and we think all around it’s just really going to delight audiences.”

The women will get to meet the judges for the first time tonight during their interviews. Sawyer said that the pageant has a local and international field of experts who are well-suited to choose a queen.

“The exciting thing about pageants is that the public always has their picks for frontrunners, but the good thing about it is that once those girls get in front of the judges, all that really doesn’t matter. It’s how they present in front of the judges, and it’s really what the judges think, who they like, who they choose. At the end of the day there’s a lot of talk and a lot of fervor, and some of the girls do exceptionally well, but like I told them, it comes down really to once they get in front of the judges and perform at the judges’ interview on Friday night, and then again on stage on Sunday, that’s where it counts the most,” said Sawyer.

He encourages people to support all of the contestants, but he said that at the end of the day, whoever is chosen the winner the pageant committee will encourage people to support the queen because she represents all Bahamians and will represent the country in Moscow, Russia in November.

This year’s pageant is being held under the theme “The Golden Era: Celebrating 5 decades of Bahamian Beauty”.

As the ladies head into the final stretch, the pageant officials’ advice to the young women seeking to join the special sisterhood is to remember that win, lose or draw they are duty bound to uphold the tenets of pageantry in its purest form: Self-respect, personal growth, good sportsmanship, community service and national pride.

Tickets for Sunday’s finale are $100.

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