One of the roles of a pageant contestant is to help find a successor to represent their region.
Whitehorse’s Jennifer Perrin did that in spades.
Perrin, who was Miss Yukon at last year’s Miss Canada Petite Globe pageant, didn’t find one Yukoner to wear the sash, she found three.
“We’re going to have three going this year, so it’s really exciting,” said Perrin. “I tried to make it my mission this year. I wanted to make sure the Yukon was well represented there. I think for a little bit, they didn’t have anyone who went.
“I know the girls I went with last year are so excited to hear that there’s three girls going this year (from the Yukon).”
Through her recruitment efforts Perrin found Whitehorse’s Alissa Budzinski, 16, who will vie for Miss Teen Canada Globe, and Dawson City’s Alix Causer-McBurney and Cheyenne Sheila Rear, who will both go for Miss Canada Globe.
“I was contacted by (pageant organizers) before, but I didn’t think much about it,” said Causer-McBurney, 22, who has a background in modeling. “I was doing other things like traveling and such. But then Jennifer contacted me last fall and asked me if I would be interested in doing it. She made it sound really interesting and like a great experience. So I thought I’d give it a shot.”
Not only did Perrin find Yukon contestants, she used Kijiji and her Miss Yukon Facebook page to find contestants on the other side of the country.
“Last year I noticed there was no one from Newfoundland and I made it my mission and I found two girls from Newfoundland who are going this year,” she said.
“I tried my hardest to find girls from the other territories. I personally didn’t. I’m not sure if the other territories are going to be represented.”
Like most pageants, there are elements to the contest that need to be fulfilled, such as a “national costume” or, in other words, attire that reflect the region being represented.
As a Dawsonite, Causer-McBurney has selected a gold-rush era ball gown. Budzinski will show her sourdough spirit with a “snowshoe shuffler” costume inspired by the Rendezvous celebrations.
There is also the talent portion of the pageant. Budzinski, who attends Vanier Catholic Secondary School, plans to recite the entire periodic table of elements in numeric order.
Causer-McBurney, who is studying anthropology at the University of Victoria, plans to show her “adaptability” by performing tasks association with gold mining, such as operating an excavator.
“I’ve done so many things that are not really normal,” said Causer-McBurney. “My parents operate a gold mine – I know a lot about gold mining – so a lot of my talents have to do with gold mining.”
However, there’s a lot more than talents and gowns to becoming Miss Canada.
Miss Canada Globe Productions has a mission statement that states: “To provide assistance to charities and non-profit organizations. To help raise funds and bring public awareness to their charitable causes.”
In fact, as the outgoing Miss Petite Yukon, Perrin is now eyeing the title of Miss Canada Charity, which is not decided by a pageant but solely on her contributions to her region through charitable work.
“Every time I have spare time and there’s an event going on I try to help out or attend,” said Parrin. “Everything from the MS Walk, the Run for Mom, the Aids Walk … all sorts of different things like that. I always try to invite the girls we have going this year.
“The platform I went with last year – Ovarian Cancer Canada – I’m still in contact with them. I help them when they need it.”
Budzinski has selected WaterCan as her charity. It’s a Canadian organization dedicated to providing clean water to impoverished people around the world.
“Some people choose charities like providing books to kids. It’s good for people to do that, but there’s some people around the world that can’t even get the basic necessities like filtered water,” she said.
The three contestants will first attend a regional competition in Toronto at the end of August before the national competition immediately after.
If any of the Yukon contestants end up with a crown, it will not be the first time. Whitehorse’s Dalyce Smith was named Miss Canada in 1955.
“Since being involved in the pageant, I’ve had so many awesome opportunities,” said Parrin. “I’ve actually signed with an acting and modeling agency. There are definitely a lot of things to come from it and that’s what I tell the people.
“Since I’ve done this, not only have I come out of my shell as a person and I’m a whole lot more confident, I’ve had so many awesome opportunities of things to do.”
Cheyenne Sheila Rear could not be reached for comment.
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