Miss Powell River
The Miss Powell River contest has a long history in this town. The following is an excerpt from a speech written by Mrs. Peggy Bird for a past Miss Powell River contest, which summarizes the first 60 years of the contest.
"Over the sixty years there have been many gala social occasions in Powell River. Perhaps none has been more exciting than the Miss Powell River Pageant. It was not always so named and this morning we will review the history of this event.
As early as 1925 a Paper Queen was chosen to rule over the Labor Day festivities sponsored by the Elks Lodge. It was called the Flag Day Celebration. The first paper queen was Lillian Omand. Queens were nominated by their schools or chosen by the district in which they resided. In 1934 Anna White was chosen to be the Paper Queen. Anna brought fame to Powell River as a ballerina and later as a choreographer in Hollywood and New York.
In 1945 the Sulphur Gulch Fair was organized and in this year Miss Ruth Ford was chosen Sulphur Gulch Queen by popular vote. In 1948 Miss Louise Martin won the title and went on to win the Miss B.C. pageant. She was sponsored by B.L. Bridge, a construction company that was in P.R. for a short time working on the steam plant. By some stroke of good fortune or good taste the Queen committee decided to change the title of Sulphur Gulch Queen to Miss Powell River and in 1953 Loretta Stratham as Miss Westview became Powell River's Queen. She then went on to compete in the Miss P.N.E. contest.
A series of talented and lovely Powell River girls was chosen over the next few years. In 1956 Gail Sloboda now Gail Curtis was crowned queen, in 1959 it was Dale Hancock, in 1964 - Dianne Taylor; and then in 1968 Miss Legion won the honor of wearing the crown for Powell River. Yes, Janet Bowes was our Queen that year and she carried the banner of Powell River into the Miss P.N.E pageant - and won that crown too. What an honor for our paper town!
In 1974 a lovely young lady from Sliammon won the title. Jeannie Paul was chosen to represent Powell River that year.
And so the story continues. Styles have changed. Hairdos have changed, but the thrill of being chosen Miss Powell River will never change."
In 1991, the name of the pageant was again changed, this time to "Powell River Youth Ambassador," the winner that year being Marisa Carmen. Since then we have been treated to a series of amazing young women who have carried the title exceptionally well and made our community proud. In 1998, Melissa Hindle won the pageant and then went on to win the title of Miss British Columbia. The most last winner of the Ambassador program was Heather Gambroski in 2008 after which the program was disbanded.
Mill Powell Rivers from 1927-2008