Following close to 3 a long time of standing on the sidelines while St. John Competition royalty took middle stage, the spotlight will be on pageant director Enid Doway at food items good this Sunday in Cruz Bay.
“She’s completed an exceptional work putting on the pageantry,” reported Division of Festivals Assistant Director Leona Smith. “She’s been instrumental in other functions as effectively, specifically the parade. She’s carried out all this devoid of becoming compensated.”
Doway explained she typically found herself dedicating 80 several hours or more a week to the Competition pageant functions when holding down a comprehensive-time job. She stated with a snicker that she palms in her resignation every single year on July 5, but inevitably she’s pulled back again into the pageantry.
“We get a great deal of women who are very, extremely shy, and by the time we’re by means of with them it is a fully unique individual that appears on the phase,” claimed Doway. “Seeing the transformation in these ladies who blossom immensely is the defining instant of why I have been executing this for so lengthy.”
Some former St. John Festival royalty even went on to compete on the international pageant circuit, Doway continued.
“We’ve had queens who’ve long gone as considerably as Antigua to take part in the Jaycees pageant, and a single went to the Miss out on Planet pageant in South Africa,” she mentioned. “We’re exhibiting these youthful women that there is much more out there, and that they’re able to contend with anybody in the world.”
As pageantry has expanded into a major business enterprise, with pricey chaperones, modeling coaches, gowns, and costumes, Doway mentioned she could normally depend on the St. John group to move up and make the pageants a reality.
“I can usually depend on the complete group pulling together to practice these women,” she explained. “That’s 1 of the matters I enjoy about the island of St. John and why I’ll often carry on to be associated in the pageants, simply because the local community sees the worth of creating this ambiance for youthful females to be a portion of a little something distinct.”
Doway herself shied absent from pageants when she was growing up on St. John, pointing to a speech impediment that she stated manufactured her dread having to speak in front of an audience. She did, nevertheless, get to be closely involved in the 1983 pageant when her cousin and finest good friend, Monique Matthias, competed. A young Doway served as Matthias’s mentor, supporting her from the sidelines as she’s now accomplished for numerous rivals above her almost 30-calendar year pageant occupation. The pageant director stated she’s doubtful about being in the spotlight at Sunday’s foodstuff reasonable.
“I was stunned and confused when I located out,” she mentioned. “At 1st I was contemplating I did not want the honor, simply because my pleasure in executing the pageants will come from observing the change in the young ladies. It is not about declaring I’m the chairperson of the pageant committee, due to the fact I’m not that style of individual. I’m extra of a qualifications person.”
Citizens could have observed there are no pageants on the St. John Celebration 2022 plan. Doway mentioned COVID-19 is 1 obstacle to internet hosting the situations this yr the next roadblock is funding.
“To set on the pageant, it depends on donations,” she stated. “I am making an attempt to determine out how we’re going to solicit donations now that we are no for a longer period a nonprofit organization. In the previous, donations could be a tax generate-off, but we won’t be capable to do that any more.”
The St. John Pageant & Cultural Corporation, which was accountable for placing on St. John Festival situations for a number of many years till the Division of Festivals was proven in 2019, was a registered nonprofit group. The Division of Festivals is a federal government firm overseen by the V.I. Division of Tourism.
2019 Junior Miss St. John Pageant Tamyra Bartlette will reign in excess of this year’s parade. Whilst there are no pageants to oversee this year, Doway said she’s nonetheless volunteering a great number of several hours with the Division of Festivals, generating celebration programs, helping organize food items good and the July 4 parade, and a great deal extra.
Food stuff reasonable is set to get location on the Cruz Bay waterfront Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. The boat race and Panorama, which will get location in Pageant Village, are on for Sunday evening.