The Queen Silver Star candidates 2013-2014 made their debut Tuesday evening at the Schubert Centre with the best wishes of family, friends and the community.
The 16 young women from Vernon, Coldstream, Lavington, Lumby and Armstrong were introduced by their sponsors and wore their sashes and tiaras for the first time.
The candidates are: Kayla Ayers, Miss Log Barn 1912; Ali Casanova, Miss A&W; Brooke Drake, Miss Talkin Donkey; Celine Grosch, Miss Kalamalka Rotary; Dakota Kemp, Miss Downtown Vernon Association; Cheyenne Krog, Miss Durning Directions & Service Ltd; Alysha Moffatt, Miss Blenz Coffee; Lindsay Petruk, Miss Okanagan Natural Medicine; Daelyn Ponipal, Miss City Furniture and Appliances; Taylor Sheardown, Miss Johnston Meier Insurance; Simmy Sidhu, Miss MHC Mortgage House (Kari Gares); Cassia Swartz, Miss Armstrong Kin Club; Micah Tumlinson, Miss Betty Lou Boutique; Paige Webster, Miss White House Mortgages; Hana Whibley, Miss Cheek to Cheek Dance Studio/Dean’s Tailor Shop; and Sandra Wuggenig, Miss Silver Star Rotary.
“Vernon royalty has represented the North Okanagan as goodwill ambassadors at home and around the province for more than 50 years and we know our new royalty will do the same,” said Coleen Noel, chairperson of the Queen’s Committee.
Janice Foster congratulated the candidates on behalf of MLA Eric Foster, who was unable to attend the event.
“We wish the candidates all the best. It’s a great program. Many years ago, I was involved in the Miss Lumby program and I know how much the girls will get out of it. Thank you to Emily (Pfannschmidt, Queen Silver Star) and Antonya (Crosby, Princess Silver Star) for the great ambassadors they have been. And a big thank you to the Queen’s Committee, they work extra hard.”
The Queen’s Committee members are Coleen Noel, Kelsey von Holst, Carol von Holst, Karen Humphreys, Alla Cook, Claudia Dranchuk, Doreen Hossie, and Brandi Witwicki.
Lumby mayor Kevin Acton welcomed the candidates and wished them good luck. Vernon Mayor Rob Sawatzky was not able to attend but sent his regards.
Vernon Winter Carnival vice-chairperson Kevin Rothwell brought good wishes from the Vernon Winter Carnival chairperson Calvin Hoy and the board of directors.
“It’s going to be an exciting year. Queen Silver Star is such an important part of Winter Carnival. Thank you to all the sponsors and we hope to see everyone out to Carnival of Superheroes February 7-16.”
Queen Silver Star Emily Pfannschmidt encouraged the candidates.
“It makes me so happy to see 16 of you wonderful ladies here ready to embark on what a wonderful program this is. It’s such a wonderful experience. We have had a wonderful time travelling around the province and at home,” she said. “In October, we will go to our sister city, Modesto, California and represent Canada in the international festival of 35 countries. We have been fundraising for that, including working on a farm for a weekend. We thank the Queen’s Committee and everyone who makes the program such a success.”
Princess Silver Star Antonya Crosby said, “There were so many great experiences. One of the highlights was travelling to Victoria, having a tour of the legislature and lunch and dinner with MLA Eric Foster.”
The candidates take classes three to four evenings a week for five months where they learn a variety of skills, do community volunteer work, take part in the Little Miss Winter Carnival Program for girls ages six to eight, and are eligible for scholarships to carry on their education.
The class instructors, like everyone in the program, are volunteers. They are: Heather Freeman, speech class; Olivia Robertaon, opening dance; Tamsen Guidi and Marley Sofiak, modeling; Tammy Holland, makeup and skin care, Lara Konklin, mural tour; Holly Deleenheer, hair care; Teresa Durning, tourism; Jan Hillis, nutrition; Martin von Holst, automotive class; Troy Fochler, financial awareness; Lorna Robb; Beki Held, interview skills; Goldy Sidhu, fitness at Ladies World.
The judges, who spend time getting to know the candidates at events and interviews are: Debbie Gardner, Dianna Ferguson, Brietana Jackson, Tammy Schiewe and Julia Scott-Kennedy.
“We are all very excited for these 16 candidates as they embark on this journey and we know it will be a wonderful experience for them,” said Noel.
For more information about Vernon Winter Carnival see www.vernonwintercarnival.com.