Aisha Jones was crowned Miss Teen Bahamas Galaxy 2013 at the Whyndam Nassau Resort on April 28. Recalling that the competition was stiff from the onset, and that she had not placed in the Miss Abaco Pageant, she was hesitant about entering the Bahamas Galaxy Pageant.
Nevertheless, she followed up on the invitation to join the Bahamas Galaxy Pageant System, and ended up falling in love with the pageant. The competition initially started with four girls in the 14 to 18-year-old Teen Division, but two girls dropped out. Because there were only two of them remaining, the Miss and Teen divisions were combined to create a senior division. This meant that the adolescent contestants competed with women between the ages of 19 to 28 years old.
Two weeks before the pageant, there was a float parade, and Aisha placed second. To determine final scores, 20 percent was allocated for categories based on the judges’ interview, most photogenic, fashion wear, swim suit and evening gown. Aisha was awarded for receiving the most “likes” on Facebook, the most ticket sales, the most advertisements, and the People’s Choice Award.
To boost her ticket sales, Aisha and her mother concocted a phenomenal idea. Because many of her supporters from Abaco could not attend, they encouraged them to purchase tickets and donate the tickets to the Ranfurly Homes for Children and Elizabeth Estates Children’s Home. 30 people attended from both homes in total, and she sold 35 additional tickets. On the night of the pageant, Aisha sold one more ticket, giving her a final total of 66.
Ticket sales were not the only reason she targeted children’s homes. Aisha’s platform concentrated on anti-bullying and emotional abuse awareness. It was a platform she had embraced as a contestant in the Miss Abaco Pageant.
“I am passionate about the cause because I was a victim of bullying from Grades 3 to 11. This is like a big deal for me, so anything that has to do with bullying, I could totally push it because I know how it feels to be on the other side,” Aisha said. “My thing is – if you‘re going to keep talking about it, and have stories about it, who is going to push it to stop it? So if I could be one of the people to stop it, then why not stop it?”
From the confidence Aisha exudes, it’s difficult to believe that she was ever bullied, but her pleasant personality comes from knowing what it feels like to be hurt. Sadly, one of her cousins committed suicide because of bullying, so it has hit close to home for her entire family.
“People tend to say that the people who get hurt the most tend to have the prettiest smile. Well I get complimented on my smile a lot, so that can tell you how much I’ve been through already,” Aisha revealed. “I put up a façade sometimes, but right now,” she said pointing to her smile, “this is for real. I am so happy that I overcame the obstacle.”
After overcoming that obstacle, Aisha completed her BGCSE examinations, received her acceptance letter from the College of The Bahamas, and secured a summer job. She plans to attend her upcoming Miss Teen Galaxy International Competition in Orlando on Aug. 3, while vacationing with family. In the fall, she will head to C.O.B.
Nevertheless, this cheerful, teenaged beauty queen is enjoying her new lease on life. Her bedroom was once her haven, but now she looks forward to doing something almost every day and every weekend.
Highlights for the new beauty queen also included an orientation at Super Clubs Breezes Bahamas where she met pageant directors, reigning queens, and those she would compete against. There were many practices along the way for the contestants through Yodephy Dance & Modelling Academy and Bahamas Galaxy Pageants as they learned to walk the runway, spins and turns, and their opening dance. She also attended the Bijoux Bahamian Hair Battle & Showcase on May 24 at the Rainforest Theater at the Crystal Palace.
However, there was also downtime for the contestants amidst their busy schedules. She vividly remembered the fun day at Atlantis, going golfing for the first time as well as an enjoyable evening at Mario’s Bowling and Entertainment Palace.
Her mother organized a low-key welcome ceremony for her on May 29. While on Abaco, Aisha was engaged in a number of community services activities and speaking engagements on being a pageant queen at local schools and church and youth groups.
She was amazed by Lovely Reckley’s School Lunch Program because of the volume of food she prepares and delivers for schools on the island each day. She had a fun time autographing books at CAPS. She was equally impressed by the students of Every Child Counts (ECC), who make soap, purify water, farm and make their own compost, their obstacle course, and by their fascinating artwork. During her visit to ECC, a student gave her a tour of the school grounds, and at the end of the tour, he sang for her.
Aisha also paid a courtesy call to Renardo Curry, MP for North Abaco and Parliamentary Secretary, and made an appearance on the Bahamas Christian Network (BCN). Her visit to Abaco ended with an evening reception at St. John the Baptist Parish Hall with all persons who bought her gifts, and welcomed her into their establishments to speak.
Aisha received gifts from Abaco Treasures; Edna Kemp; Judith Nesbitt; Tanya Saunders Boutique; Roslyn’s Fashions; and La Chalet’s Shoe Boutique. She thanked each one of her sponsors and supporters.
“I thank God, my pageant director, Andrea Knott, and the whole Galaxy Pageant Committee. My mother who did everything, and made a million sacrifices. My grandfather and Double R Services; the companies that placed ads in the booklet; special thanks to Mrs. Kayla Wallace and Mrs. Clarissa Ramsey; pageant sponsors including those from the Miss Abaco Pageant; and all of my school friends,” Aisha listed. “We received a lot of stuff, but there was no money involved and no scholarships.
I get to keep my crown and sash.”
She received free Spanish lessons, karate lessons for a year, a year’s worth of body wash, shampoo, conditioner and lotion, make up, free massages, gift coupons, three to four sets of jewelry including diamond earrings, gym membership, and modeling and personal training sessions.
Aisha Jones is a former student of Abaco Central High School, and now a recent graduate of C.V. Bethel Senior High in Nassau.