The Miss American Samoa pageant has been an annual spectacle for as long as I can remember.
In its heyday, the Miss American Samoa pageant was something that everyone looked forward to seeing–who was in it, what was she wearing, how would she answer the interview, what was her talent, etc… And while people do still look forward to the event, the mismanagement of recent pageants–and maybe the rise of feminism–has devolved the usual enthusiasm for the pageant into a hyped up fashion and entertainment show. This is of course just my opinion. I also do think that the platform that the crowned Miss takes up is an important one, and that her duties and responsibilities have only become more important with time. She becomes a representative of youth and women issues in American Samoa and is able to propel these issues in the local community and share it with the world.
“She becomes a representative of youth and women issues in American Samoa”
This year, the Miss American Samoa Inc. wanted to bring back the basics in an attempt to restore the old glory of the pageant. The theme of this year’s pageant was “Samoa, Muamua Le Atua”, meaning “Samoa, put God first”. It is the official motto of American Samoa and is prominently featured on the seal and coin of American Samoa. With that in mind, majority of the contestants focused on the historical and religious aspects of the Samoan culture in their talents and traditional wear, and made the audience laugh and hoot with their different interpretations of dance and history. Overall, the pageant was well executed–short, sweet and simple–in comparison to previous years.
Antonina Keka Lilomaiava
Village: Aua & Fagatogo
Sponsored by: SSAB Pago Inc.
Janet Peleiupu Fa’afo’i
Sponsored by: SM Sewing Shop, CCCAS Aoloau Youth, 5 Star Inc, Family & Friends.
Sponsored by: Pacific Independent Distributors Inc.
Luava’asi’itia Aprilynn Esera
Sponsored by: Sliding Rock Inc.
Village: Nu’uuli, Aua, Malaeloa & Fitiuta
Sponsored by: Tess Sewing Shop.
Breakdown of awards:
- Miss Personality: Taisamasama Toatelegese
- Miss MASI: Antonina Lilomaiava
- Miss Photogenic: Janet Fa’afo’i
- Miss Bluesky Internet: Antonina Lilomaiava
- Best Sarong: Antonina Lilomaiava
- Best Talent: Fellen Kelemete
- Best Traditional Wear: Antonina Lilomaiava
- Best Siva Samoa: Taisamasama Toatelegese
- Best Interview: Antonina Lilomaiava
- Best Pre-Pageant Interview: Fellen Kelemete
And the final standings:
- 4th Runner Up: Janet Fa’afo’i
- 3rd Runner Up: Taisamasama Toatelegese
- 2nd Runner Up: Aprilynn Esera
- 1st Runner Up: Fellen Kelemete
- Crowned Miss American Samoa 2016-2017: Antonina Lilomaiava
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