LITTLE CURRENT—It was a full audience once again for the Miss Manitoulin 2016 pageant last Thursday night at the Manitoulin Hotel and Conference Centre that saw six young ladies compete and 15-year-old Hope Gulyas of Manitowaning crowned this year’s winner.
It was a tough night for the judges, which included Debby Turner, proprietor of Turners of Little Current, Miss Manitoulin 2015 Brittany Manitowabi and The Expositor’s Carly Gordon.
This year’s contestants included 17-year-old Michelle Campbell of Mindemoya, 14-year-old Zoé Couillard from Kagawong, 15-year-old Hope Gulyas of Manitowaning, 14-year-old Kieran Harper-Hogge of Little Current, 16-year-old Delaney Madore of Gore Bay and 17-year-old Megan Misner of Gore Bay.
“I was nervous on the day of the pageant but excited once I starting hanging out with all the girls,” shared Miss Manitoulin 2016 Hope Gulyas. “We had a lot of fun throughout the day. My favourite parts of the day were getting to see the other girls practice their talents and getting ready for the pageant.”
“On the morning of the pageant all the girls arrived at the hotel, many having not met before,” explained Miss Manitoulin committee member Robin Burridge. “We had orientation with the girls and a run through before the ladies participated in a workshop with Julie Rochefort-Wood on loving yourself and positive body image and a workshop on pageants and runway walking with Miss Manitoulin 2014 Katie Harper.”
“It was very rewarding throughout the day to see the girls open up and make new friends and come out of their shells,” added fellow Miss Manitoulin committee member Alicia McCutcheon.
In the afternoon the girls headed to Hair and Nails 2000 in Little Current to have their hair styled for the pageant by Phreddie Shore before heading back to the hotel for makeup by Ashlyn Gargour of Flawless Finish.
Next was the one-on-one interviews with the judges that were worth 40 percent of the contestants’ overall marks.
It was a full audience as Kelly Timmermans introduced this year’s six contestants followed by a fashion show featuring Island fashions from Boarderline in Little Current, Dreamer’s Cove in Little Current, the Outpost General Store in Little Current, My Ol’ Blues in Gore Bay’s Tweeny Project ‘2 Blue Girlz,’ Cindy’s Fashions in Mindemoya, Turners of Little Current, The Island Jar in Little Current and The Kuku Hut in Little Current, Kagawong and Tobermory.
The contestants had a choice of either performing a talent or presenting a speech on Manitoulin Island.
Michelle danced to ‘Ghosts’ by Charlie, Zoe presented a speech on Manitoulin, Hope sang ‘Melody Within,’ Kieran danced to the song ‘We are Young,’ Delaney danced to Adele’s ‘Send my Love’ and Megan sang ‘She Keeps Me Warm’ by Mary Lambert.
The final component of the pageant was an evening gown presentation.
After a brief intermission the girls were called back on the stage and the finalists were named. The contestants chose Michelle and Megan for the Miss Congeniality Award, while the Haweater Pride Award, given to the contestant who demonstrated the most passion, knowledge and pride of living on Manitoulin Island, was awarded to Zoé.
Michelle was named the second runner up, while Delaney received the first runner up.
Miss Manitoulin 2015 Brittany Manitowabi presented Miss Manitoulin 2016 Hope Gulyas with her crown and sash.
Hope went on throughout the weekend to help at various Haweater Weekend events and was featured in the parade.
“I did not expect to win, but I was so thankful and happy when my name was called,” said Hope. “It was all so much fun.”
Hope had a big cheering crowd of over 30 family and friends for the pageant that rushed the stage after to congratulate her.
“I’m looking forward to representing Miss Manitoulin at Manitoulin CountryFest this weekend and I’m really excited for Miss North Ontario next year,” said Hope.
Hope is home schooled and will be going into Grade 11 this fall. She said she is looking forward to the rest of her summer and visiting her family cottage in Barrie.
“If anyone is interested in inviting Miss Manitoulin to attend their event this summer or throughout the year (Hope’s schedule permitting), they can contact myself at 705-348-2169 or firstname.lastname@example.org and the Miss Manitoulin committee can coordinate with Hope,” said Ms. Burridge.
The Miss Manitoulin committee would like to thank all of the pageant volunteers, the Lions Club helpers and amazing Island business sponsors that help make Miss Manitoulin possible each year.