By William G. Ysaguirre, Freelance Reporter
Gloria Robateau, a great-grandmother of Belize City won the 2014 Ms ‘Y’ pageant at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts in Belize City on Friday night.
The event, organized annually by the Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA), showcases “seenagers” compete in a formal evening gown segment and a talent competition.
On Friday night Robateau won the judges’ hearts with her one-woman skit encouraging young people to get back in school and for those enrolled students to stay in school. She also won the title of Miss Graciousness, with which she received a sash. Ms Gloria is the proud mother of eight daughters and three sons, who have blessed her with 28 grandchildren and six great grandchildren.
First runner up, Miss Belmopan Janet Graham, dressed in a bocotora turtle costume for her cultural presentation, in which she presented a monologue promoting the conservation of the bocotora turtle. A long time staple in the diet of Belize river valley residents, the bocotora turtle is now under threat of over-fishing, and Graham stressed the importance of saving this part of our Belizean heritage for future generations to enjoy. Graham also won the title and sash of Miss Courageous.
Second runner up, Mrs. Rose Marie Skeen of Ladyville waltzed and merengued her way in to the hearts of the audience in her cultural presentation. She also won the title and sash of Miss Determination.
Other contestants included Mrs. Bernice Ford – Miss Perseverance, who also did a dance number and Mrs. Whylma Simon, who won the title of Miss Personality. A sixth contestant Mrs. Virginia Foreman was also on the programme but had to withdraw at the last moment due to a personal injury.
The winners will receive their prizes at a special award ceremony at the YWCA on St Thomas Street on Tuesday evening, May 13.
The three-hour-long programme also included performances by the Belmopan Senior Steps dance group, showing how to add years to life through dance-fit exercises; while Radiance Thompson and Donald Mossiah entertained the audience with songs as the judges tabulated their scores.
Other queens who graced the pageant including Ms Y 2013-14 Mrs. Eloisa Hassan, Miss Y 2012-13 Mrs. Julia Murray, Ms African Queen – Ms Maryam Abdul Quaqiyy and Ms Woman of Valor 2014-15 Ms. Ameera Wallace.