Plus size women send Linden wild at pageant
It was gyrations “fa so”, with splits and body contortions, belly rolls and buttock swivels, movements that sent the massive crowd at the Mackenzie Sports Club into resounding applause over and over.
And just when one thought that the “girls” had exhausted their repertoire of moves, there was more to come.
The occasion, the Miss Big, Bold and Beautiful pageant, on Wednesday last proved beyond the shadow of a doubt that “big girls” have a lot of fashion statements to make; and are as elegant, eloquent, intelligent and alluring as their slim counterparts.
With overwhelming support from the audience, many of whom were “big girls” themselves, dressed to the hilt almost as if they were in competition with those participating in the pageant, the girls were totally hyped by the positive response from the moment they stepped on stage.
The audience was first of all thoroughly entertained by the delegates with their opening dance, which stole many hearts from the get go.
Many “oohs, ahhs,” and other exclamations filled the air as the girls did their thing on stage: gyrating with ecstatic abandon, thrilling and mesmerizing the audience with their scintillating and provocative moves.
Then it was time for the talent pieces. All of the delegates performed creditably, but crowd favourite Diana Ross kept everyone in stitches with her energetic gyrations, even doing complete splits more than once, effectively stealing the spotlight with her every move.
Later the girls donned swimsuits, and strutted their stuff on stage as members of the audience, with eyes glued to their every move, argued about who had the best legs, etc.
The evening gown segment was next, after a brief musical interlude which was interspersed with ballroom dancing and singing.
Here the delegates stepped sedately on stage, each trying to outdo the other in grace and deportment.
Delegate number one, Fiona Braithwaite, chose a mint green gown featuring tucks on the skirt, with delegate number two Barbara Duggan also decked in green; the third delegate to appear on stage, Marilyn Baker, chose a bronze gown, while crowd favourite Diana Ross chose cream and bronze. Michelle Johnson looked angelic in pure white, while popular boxer Shaundelle Parks stood tall in a mauve ensemble.
The top three delegates, Diana Ross, Shonette Layne and Marilyn Baker, were picked after this segment,
after which each delegate was asked a question.
This was the defining moment for the three delegates. Even though all of them had done remarkably well up to this juncture, receiving the judges’ final nod was dependent on their responses to their individual questions.
Marilyn Baker failed to answer her question correctly while Diana Ross’s answer to her question “What would you do if you were to sit on the Town Week Committee?” could have been considered sexist. She said she would involve more women, as men invariably caused problems.
Shonette Layne was finally adjudged winner, and also carted off the Best Legs, Best Gown and Most Intelligent prizes.
Diana Ross copped the first runner up position, to the chagrin of many of her fans, while Marilyn Baker was second runner up.
All the delegates received certificates of participation, floral arrangements and cosmetics.
It was the very first time that plus size women participated competitively since the Big and Beautiful pageant became a feature of the Linden Town Week Celebrations.
This year’s franchise holders for the pageant, Camille Cummings and Marilyn Bourne, said that they felt full figured women possess talent, skills and abilities equivalent to their slim counterparts, but for some reason, these women are often “shut out”.
She pointed out that the intelligence segment was the highlight of the pageant, even though it was not open to the public. She applauded the delegates on their performance.
Many patrons at the Big and Beautiful pageant opined that the girls competing for the Miss Linden Town Week title on Saturday had better “watch out” as the big girls have certainly set a precedent that’s hard to emulate!