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Territory to host Miss South Pacific Pageant

fili@samoanews.com

American Samoa will be the host country for the 2012 Miss South Pacific Pageant, the regional event that will be a private-public sector partnership to showcase the territory to the region and the world, says David Vaeafe, executive director of the American Samoa Visitor’s Bureau.

The host country decision was made last week by the Miss South Pacific board of directors, who met to discuss among other things, proposals for hosting the 2012 pageant. The board meeting coincided with the 2011 Miss South Pacific pageant in Samoa.

Virginia Samuelu, American Samoa’s member on the board, was unable to attend due to pressing matters in Pago Pago and therefore, Vaeafe was there to represent the territory.

Responding to Samoa News questions, Vaeafe said American Samoa’s intention to host the 2012 pageant had been made prior to his attendance at the meeting.

(American Samoa had made known its intention to bid for host country during last year’s pageant in Papua New Guinea and again several months ago.)

The countries that had shown interest in hosting the 2012 event were the Solomon Islands, Tonga and American Samoa. At the meeting in Apia, the Solomon Islands withdrew from contention as they are hosting next year’s 11th Festival of Pacific Arts, while Tonga didn’t make an offer, said Vaeafe.

Tonga’s board member, along with board members representing Fiji, Cook Islands, Hawaii, Solomon Islands, Papua New Guinea, Tokelau and Samoa unanimously voted for American Samoa, said Vaeafe.

Asked for details of American Samoa’s proposal to the board, Vaeafe said, there was “no formal proposal presented, other then the verbal intention to make it a successful event” next year.

He said the Visitor’s Bureau along with the Commerce Department and the Governor’s Office will meet early in the new year — around February/ March to begin planning the event and the date.

“Miss South Pacific 2012 Pageant will be a public/ private sector partnership event to showcase and promote the Territory to the region and the world,” said Vaeafe, who points out that this is a great event to attract tourists to the territory.

American Samoa has hosted three pageants since the first one held in 1986. The pageant is owned by the Samoa government.



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