The six lovely contestants of the Miss Teen Abaco Pageant graced the stage together as “Blossoming Beauties” for one last time at the Pageant Finale held at the Murphy Town Community Center on Nov. 24.
Once again, the contestants were: Carissa Francois, Miss Hibiscus; Ronnycha Baptiste, Miss Yellow Elder; Fanaeya Nicholson, Miss Lotus; Jada McKenzie, Miss Poinciana; Chamadora Camelus, Miss Cherry Blossom; and Jolyne Lubin, Miss African Moon.
Prior to the Pageant Finale, the float parade was held the week before, and Miss Hibiscus – Carissa Francois – was named the winner, followed by Fanaeya Nicholson, Miss Lotus, as first runner-up, and Jolyne Lubin, Miss African Moon, as second runner-up.
There were more firsts for Miss Hibiscus as she won the Public Service Accountment (PSA) award and the Miss Teen Top Model title. Miss Lotus placed as first runner-up and Miss Cherry Blossom as second runner-up in the Miss Top Teen Model competition.
Director and franchise owner of the Miss Teen Abaco International, Obrio Denoye, explained that the PSA competition required the contestants to design a one to three-minute video presentation on their platform, charity work and what they would like to implement.
Miss Yellow Elder, Ronnycha Baptiste was the first runner-up, and Miss Cherry Blossom, Chamadora Camelus settled in as second runner-up in the PSA competition.
Miss Poinciana, Jada McKenzie, was voted as most photogenic.
In the interview segment of the finale, Miss Lotus scored 40 percent to become the winner, with Miss Hibiscus as first runner-up and Miss Yellow Elder as second runner-up. The points began to rack up for Miss Lotus as she accumulated another 15 percent as the winner of the evening gown segment, and as the fun fashion winner.
The Director’s Award was bestowed upon Miss Yellow Elder – Ronnycha Baptiste.
Hosted by Chinasa Outten, Miss Teen Bahamas International, the finale also saw performances by up-and-coming Abaco rap artist, Young Roey, and Bodine Johnson, a top Bahamian performer. The owners of Calypso Hill Hideaways were given special recognition as a top-tier sponsor.
Soon it was the moment everyone had been waiting on as Miss Lotus – Fanaeya Nicholson – was crowned as Miss Teen Abaco. Miss Hibiscus was first runner-up, and Miss Yellow Elder was second runner-up, overall.
“Fanaeya Nicholson is not your average girl; she is extraordinary. Not only is she a really beautiful young lady in appearance, her inner beauty shines brightly,” Denoye boasted. “She speaks with intelligence and authority and strides with grace. She is most definitely what you call the full package.
“I am extremely excited to begin our journey to Miss Teen Bahamas International starting January to April. She is definitely a strong force and will make Abaco proud!”
As for Fanaeya, she was overwhelmed by her accomplishment in the pageant. As she thanked everyone for supporting her on her “journey to the crown,” she did not neglect to thank God for allowing her to fulfill her purpose and pursue her passion.
“It would be cliché or expected of me to share my experience, and what I did to prepare for this pageant, but in all honesty, I wouldn’t have even joined if it were not for God’s push and strength,” she reflected. “This pageant has opened my eyes to see what I am really capable of, it’s revealed to me things I didn’t even know about myself, and it has disciplined me in ways unexplainable. I am so grateful that I was given the opportunity to compete in Miss Teen Abaco 2018.”
As the reigning queen, Fanaeya vowed to always conduct herself in “a decent and respectful manner,” and to never lose focus of her goal, which is to keep expanding on her platform of sexual harassment and female objectification.
She is committed to representing her island to the best of her ability, and to always listen to the community in ways she can help while being a role model and representative for Abaco.
“And I would love to see more young women competing in pageantry – trust me ladies, you will not be disappointed. In pageantry, you always leave with benefits whether you’re crowned or not,” she concluded.
For Denoye, organizing the Miss Teen Abaco pageant was quite an experience.
“Well, the pageant experience has been exceptional for me [as] I stepped out on faith. It was all just a concept back in March, and I never thought it would’ve come to reality until I met those six beautiful young ladies. They gave me a reason to keep fighting.
“Seeking sponsorship was extremely hard and was most definitely my biggest challenge. Nonetheless, I persevered and was able to find a few generous people, who not only offered their services, but also a lot of inspiration to keep pushing.”
Denoye said that the six contestants’ lives have been changed forever because they are now more confident, productive and focused.
“They are now ready to take on life’s challenges, and that is what my main goal of the pageant was, to bring change amongst our youth, and to showcase their inner abilities,” he acknowledged, “and I accomplished just that.”
Win or lose, Denoye said the contestants are all queens, and they know that they do not need a crown to be one.
“Seeing their transformation brought tears to my eyes when they hit the runway. They were beautiful and rocking it! I definitely saw all my hard work then and there.”