Keira Bodden wins Little Miss Brac

Showing off their awards from left are second runner-up, Tashell Dawson, winner Keira Bodden, and first runner-up Raeann Scott. – Photo: Simone Scott

Keira Bodden, 10, was crowned Little Miss Cayman Brac at the pageant hosted by the Lions Club of Cayman Brac at the Aston Rutty Centre on April 30.

Keira was also winner of the People’s Choice award and the award for best talent.

Thirteen contestants from ages 8 through 12 vied for the title. Raeann Scott and Tashell Dawson were first and second runners-up, respectively.

Jenae Scott won best talent award, and Sheila Watler won the prize for most photogenic contestant.

Along with enjoying the talent competition, fashion shows and a group dance number, the crowd was entertained by rap from Tashuan Young.

The Little Miss/Little Master Cayman Brac pageant, open to all Brac primary school students in Years 4 to 6, was first held last year. Boys and girls competed last year, but this year only the Little Miss portion of the competition was held, as the minimum of five male contestants was not met.

Under the direction of organizer Melanie Scott, the competition started with a pre-show interview with judges Keisha Syms, Melrose Gooding and Noreen Thomas.

The contest also featured a talent portion, casual and formal wear segments, and on-stage questions. Question topics included the problems kids face today, what to look for in a friend, and how the contestant might spend a million dollars if she had it.

The contestants worked for weeks, perfecting their moves for the group dance number. - Photo: James Tibbetts, Jet Photo
The contestants worked for weeks, perfecting their moves for the group dance number. – Photo: James Tibbetts, Jet Photo

The opening act featured a dance number by all the contestants with support from Koalition dance troupe choreographer Sophia Johnson and members of Koalition. Jonathan Tibbetts was the emcee.

Yvette Gayle of the Lions Club said there were at least 350 well-wishers packed into the Aston Rutty Centre for the event.

She explained that the pageant is not a beauty contest, but rather a way to encourage confidence in young people.

“The contestants learn about grooming, poise, how to answer questions and etiquette, as a way to garner confidence,” said Ms. Gayle.

“It’s about building team spirit as well, as they have to work together to build up to the event.”

Preparations for the pageant took about a month, with contestants practicing their individual sections and rehearsing the show for weeks in advance, with behind-the-scenes support from the Lions Club, parents and the community.

“It was such a rewarding experience watching the girls blossom before your eyes. It was a process that brought out the best of the kids,” said Ms. Gayle, noting that the girls’ various talents impressed the judges and the spectators.

“Really, the transformation of these girls was like watching a caterpillar becoming a butterfly. You could see them coming into their own, especially on that night.”