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Miss South Pacific to include three of Samoan heritage

The American Samoa Visitor’s Bureau and the local organizing committee have confirmed the names of all ten contestants in the 2012 McDonald’s Miss South Pacific Pageant and there will be three Samoans among the beauty queens vying for the regional title.

Besides American Samoa and Samoa, the third contestant of Samoan heritage is Miss Hawaiian Islands.

Some of the contestants will start arriving in the territory later this week, for the one-week event kicking off Dec. 2nd with the finale the evening of Dec. 8 when the reigning Miss South Pacific, Alisi Rabukawaqa will officially relinquish her crown to the new Miss South Pacific.

According to the list released by the Visitor’s Bureau the contestants are:

Miss Papua New Guinea:  Ruby-Anne Laufa, 20;

Miss Solomon Islands: Stephanie Prince, 21;

Miss Aotearoa: Marlena Martin, 24;

Miss Tonga: Ebony Nuku, 24;

Miss Samoa: Janine Tuivaiti, 20;

Miss American Samoa: Arrielle Maloata, 21;

Miss Hawaiian Islands: Joy Saleapaga, 26;

Miss Tokelau: Peki Teata, 25;

Miss Cook Islands: Kate Ngatokorua, 22;

Miss Fiji: Drue Slatter, 19.

Throughout this week and into next week, Samoa News will provide profiles of each contestant to include their education, interests and hobbies. Miss Solomon Islands will turn 22-years old on Dec. 6, while she is here for the pageant, according to the information provided by the Visitor’s Bureau.

Under the theme, ‘Treasure of the Pacific”, the contestants in this year’s pageant will compete in a number of sections including pre-pageant interview, traditional wear, sarong, talent and interview questions, says the Visitor’s Bureau eNewsletter.

The pageant’s week of activities include a visit to the LBJ Tropical Medical Center Pediatrics Ward and the Hope House home for the elderly, as well as media interviews, in-store visits, a Governor’s reception and visits to the Tauese F.P. Ocean Center and the Ulu Summit, which is set to take place Dec.5- 6.

This is the 26th anniversary of the Samoa government owned pageant and it is the fifth time American Samoa has hosted the event.

Visitor’s Bureau executive director David Vaeafe said that with the anticipated increase in visitors traveling to the territory for the pageant, they expect a great boost to the local economy, as the territory heads into the Christmas holiday.

The Pageant will be webcast live via on Saturday, Dec. 8 from 7.00 p.m. to 9.30 p.m. American Samoa time.