Welcome to our very first blog as official Titleholders!
On Saturday 5th November, all 7 entrants stood side by side, all dressed as elegant as the next, waiting to find out the next Miss Wagga Wagga and Community Princess. 8 months of hard work had come to an end. Everyone was so proud of their efforts, to raise more funds than the initial goals will forever be an unforgettable feeling.
With bright lights and a room packed with proud family and friends, no matter the outcome, all Entrants will be able to walk away with their heads held high. The skills learnt throughout the year from dining etiquette to media interviews, the growth that all Entrants have achieved particularly in public speaking, and the friendships that have developed, have all contributed to and blossomed into a memorable year.
As Dr Joe McGirr approached the microphone to announce 2023 Community Princess, the trumpets from the incredible Australian Army Band Kapooka Fanfare played, and the envelope was finally opened; Haylee Burkinshaw was announced!
After a very delayed reaction, I stepped forward in pure shock. I looked up and all I could see was the proud look on my family's faces and then hearing my nieces yell “MY AUNTY IS A PRINCESS”. After I was crowned I remember the rush of emotion from the entire year, I was (still am) incredibly honoured and I am so excited to see what the new year holds. - Haylee Burkinshaw
What a once in a lifetime moment it is to have the honourable Michael McCormack announce your name and sash you as 2023 Miss Wagga Wagga, Mayor Dallas Tout place the robe over your shoulders, pass you the sceptre and be crowned by 2022 Miss Wagga Wagga Jessikah McCarthy. I am absolutely honoured to have the opportunity to stand up and represent my community. I look forward to experiencing this new part of our journey together alongside Haylee. - Kate Pevere
Our transition from Entrants to Titleholders was swift and exciting, responsibilities being shifted from raising funds for local charities and developing our personal & professional skills, to standing proud, representing and supporting our community. This year presents us the opportunity to empower young women in the Riverina to take every opportunity that life gives you, and lead from the front to show how rewarding it is to give life your all and not be afraid of failure. We want to encourage being active members of our incredible community, and do everything we can to support and thank those that so selflessly volunteer their time and are the backbone of the Wagga Wagga community.
We know this next 12 months will pass by even quicker than the year that has gone, so we are very excited to take every opportunity presented to us to support the community we both love so much.
We are already one month into our exciting new journey and this month some of our highlights have been:
- Discussing everything Miss Wagga Wagga Quest and what we are looking forward to for our Titleholder year in radio interviews with 2AAA and TripleM
- Speaking at the Wagga Wagga Women in Business Christmas Party about the positive impacts of this experience on the Entrants and community
- Being honoured to lay the wreath at Remembrance Day on behalf of all involved in the Quest, past and present
- Speaking to the young minds at Rotary’s RYPEN program about taking opportunities and not fearing failure but looking at it as learning and growth
- Attending our first Citizenship Ceremony and humbly assisting in presenting certificates and gifts to our 32 newest Australian citizens
- Handing out purple & yellow balloons at the Wagga Marketplace to young children to kick off RESPECT Week and starting the conversation on how we can show respect
- Joining Kooringal Rotary for their weekly meeting to hear about all the wonderful ways they support the community and to talk about our experience in the Miss Wagga Wagga Quest
Kate & Haylee