Miss Shiretown Pageant comes to Houlton June 8

4 years ago

HOULTON, Maine — For the first time in 16 years, the Shiretown will host a pageant for young ladies in the greater Houlton area and beyond.

“The Miss Shiretown Pageant” is slated for 6 p.m. Saturday, June 8, at the Houlton Community Arts Center and will feature eight different age group categories for hopeful contestants.

Spearheaded by Lori Van Houten Soucy, the pageant is a partnership with the Houlton Music Department and the Houlton Community Arts Center Council and is open to any young ladies and women between the ages of birth and 24 years of age.

“My daughter Bailey has been involved in pageants for years now and one day we were looking at the beautiful stage at Houlton Middle-High School and thought it would make a wonderful setting for a pageant,” Van Houten Soucy said.

She reached out to Kevin Mania of the Houlton Music Department about renting the stage, and he felt the pageant was such a good opportunity for girls in the community that the Music Department and HCACC decided to sponsor the event.

“It is great to team up with something that supports the kids in the community,” Mania said. “Being able to support something that helps individuals build confidence, enthusiasm, leadership and pride is a great idea.”

Mania added the music department was also eager to support any event that focuses on the performing arts.

“I am sure there will be many youth that will be involved in this event that will go through our program and we hope this helps them aspire to be the best they can in all aspects,” he said.

Contestants will be broken down into eight age categories — Tiny, birth to 18 months; Little, 19 months to 3 years old; Junior Princess, ages 4-6; Princess, ages 7-9; Preteen, ages 10-12; Junior Teen, ages 13-15; Teen, ages 16-18; and Miss, ages 19-24.

Participants will compete in interviews, fun fashion and gown categories. There is a $75 application fee for contestants.

The pageant will serve as a fundraiser for the Crown CARES (Creating A Respectful Environment in Schools) program, which is “specifically designed for volunteers, pageant systems and peer ambassadors who wish to promote awareness as a platform on the epidemic of bullying in schools, to cultivate a safe environment and most importantly teach skills to develop social responsibility in school-age children, youth and teens and is modeled after the Unite Against Bullying Project.”

The last time Houlton hosted a pageant was the Miss Greater Houlton pageant held in 2003. The winner of that title was Jamie Bither Hovey.

The Miss Shiretown Pageant is not connected to that historical event, and the winners are not town-sponsored queens. What that means is the winners will not be going on to compete in any of the other Aroostook County pageants, such as the Maine Potato Blossom Queen event.

For information, contact Van Houten Soucy at lori_2000@msn.com or via facebook.