Costa Maya Beauty Queens arrive in San Pedro

Contestants arrive in San Pedro

The arrival of the beauty queens on Monday, July 13th, signaled the beginnings of the International Costa Maya Festival. The people of San Pedro are now getting excited and they are buying tickets to what they know is the most exciting and biggest festival in the country of Belize.

On Tuesday, July 14th, the Costa Maya Festival held the sashing ceremony for the Reina de la Costa Maya Pageant at Ramon's Village. The five contestants who will be vying for the title of Reina de la Costa Maya are: representing Guatemala: Miss Astrid Ramirez; representing El Salvador: Miss Johanna Paulina Sasmay Villacorta; representing Mexico: Miss Barbara Macossay; representing Honduras: Miss Dania Prince and representing Belize: Miss Charlotte Lynette Romero Dominguez.

Miss Belize: Charlotte Lynette Romero Dominguez

Miss El Salvador: Johanna Paulina Sasmay Villacorta

Miss Guatemala: Astrid Ramirez
Master of Ceremonies for the event was Eiden Salazar, Deputy Mayor. Presenting the sashes to the contestants were Vanya Vasquez, Miss San Pedro 1997-98 and Miss Sharon Dominguez, pageant chaperone. The contestants were showcased at poolside, where a crowd gathered to see the radiant and ravishing young ladies and select their favorite. Each contestant was introduced and they presented themselves as beauty ambassadors to their countries. Live music was provided while the ladies dined after the ceremony.

Sharon Dominguez, pageant chaperone, said, "The girls are all enjoying themselves and everything is going on schedule so far. I was really impressed at the photo shoot that we had this morning.The ladies look good."

Previously that day, the contestants went out to enjoy the natural beauty that San Pedro has to offer. They went to The Essene Way Resort where a swimsuit photo shoot was held. In the afternoon they took the opportunity to ride around town on golf cart.

Miss Honduras: Dania Prince

Miss Mexico: Barbara Macossay

Sashing Ceremony at Ramon's Village

"The golf carts are so much fun," said Johanna Sasmay, Miss El Salvador, with a giggle. "They are so neat and fun to drive, I had a blast."

The San Pedro Sun had the opportunity to talk to the beautiful ladies over dinner at Celi's Restaurant on Monday, July 13th. All the ladies were extremely happy to be on the island. It was their first trip to Belize and San Pedro, except for Astrid Ramirez, Miss Guatemala, who had participated in a fashion show that was held in Belize City.

"San Pedro is such a beautiful island, that it hurts to be here," said Miss Astrid Ramirez. "I feel so insignificant among all this beauty."

"I know," said Miss Johanna Sasmay. "It is so beautiful here and the people here are the most nicest that I have ever met. I definitely have to come back to visit this place. I do not care, I come alone." Miss Sasmay was accompanied to San Pedro by her mother.

Dania Prince, Miss Honduras, had visited Hawaii when she competed in the Miss Universe pageant and she expressed that San Pedro is much more beautiful. "This island is so small and impressive. I am in love," she said.

"I knew the island was called La Isla Bonita, but now I know why it is called that," said Charlotte Dominguez, Miss Belize. "The island is so gorgeous and the people are exceptional."

All night long the ladies could not stop raving about the beauty of the island. They all expressed their pride in representing their country in such a beautiful festival that celebrates a common culture that unites us. After dinner the ladies took off their shoes and walked down to The Shark Bar to see the nurse sharks and the rays. They then walked down the beach to Ramon's Village where they retired for the night.

Costa Maya Beauty Queens arrive in San Pedro

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