“Life is always about the journey. It is about the highs and lows, the wins and losses, and most importantly the lessons we learn from our mistakes. As I prepare to take the Miss Hawaii stage for one of the most important nights in my life, I reflect back on this journey, and am reminded of all those who have lent a hand along the way. You all have been an inspiration to me with your incredible love and support, and for that I am eternally grateful. As cliché as it sounds, no matter the outcome tonight I know in my heart I have won. I have gained experiences, knowledge, and friendships that will last far longer than any crown or title. So with that, MAHALO NUI LOA to each and every one of you who have given me such valuable gifts of love and support on this journey of a lifetime.”
Miss Paradise Kauai 2014
What a sweetheart right? That was the message she posted yesterday, the morning of the Miss Hawaii pageant. I don’t know Stephanie but instantly she stood out to me when she took the stage last night. She is stunning and has a warm smile that makes you want to be her friend. Stephanie won the swimsuit and talent portions of the competition… but boy was it brutal! She received those awards and then it was at least a half hour of programming before they brought the girls back on stage to do the Top 5 and crowning! I bet she was DYING inside!!
Hometown? Kalaheo, Kauai
Where you when grad? Island School High School on Kauai
And now? University of Hawaii at Manoa / Upper Division Honors Program / 3rd year biology student / German language certificate
Future Career? Veterinarian
Interesting Facts? Her mother was Miss Maui 1977. Plays roller hockey and once named “Most Valuable Goalie.” Hula dancer since the age of 4.
Secret Wish or Dream? To train therapy animals and service dogs one day
So after she was crowned I waited backstage to give her a “lei that will last forever” (sunrise shell necklace) and take a photo with my new “sister.” She looked dazed. I totally get it. I don’t even remember my crowning, walk, the music that was playing… it’s all a blur! In this photo Ray welcomes me and a few other Miss Hawaii’s on stage to greet Stephanie. It puts a tear in my eye and an ache in my heart that this is Ray’s first Miss Hawaii without Thom McGarvey… but boy it must really feel like someone is watching over him for the first Miss Hawaii pageant that he is doing, (as he puts it) on his own, to crown the daughter of the first girl he ever worked with in the Miss Hawaii system. Chicken skin… Talk about full circle. I should have asked her about that when I ambushed her for an interview as she approached the elevator we were waiting for (we brought a stroller for Jackson and had waited through a couple of full elevators at this point)… but, I was so excited to see her, I didn’t even know what to say! So here is Miss Hawaii 2014′s first interview – filmed by Billy V and interviewed by a flustered ME! ha ha! Isn’t she sooo cute?!
The lovely, Crystal Lee, Miss Hawaii 2013 did an amazing goose bump performance as her farewell dance. She choreographed it herself. I kept saying… wow, wow, wow. She is such a sweetheart as well and now officially “a former” and a part of the sisterhood! Welcome Crystal!!
All in all, a GREAT night with great company! Will post about my personal experience when I get the chance but now I’m headed to the beach!! Ciao!