Miss Fil-Am USA FL 2016: Beauty at its Finest!
Article By: Raymund Thom Golez | Managing Editor
Images credits: FASCI, Miss Fil-Am USA
“A woman is the full circle. Within her is the power to create, nurture and transform.” — Diane Mariechild
Beauty in diversity is what people have had seen during the coronation night of Miss Fil-Am USA FL 2016. Five equally gorgeous and beautiful Filipino-Americans representing the local hometowns of their respective kins in the Philippines competed for the crown and title of the same. The pageant was organized by Filipino-American Social Club Inc. (FASCI), one of the largest organized group of Filipino-Americans based in Tampa, Florida.
It was a highly anticipated pageant event as far as this writer and many Filipino-Americans are concerned. From my immense conversation with the Fil-Ams, I must say that this is something that a lot of people look forward to as part of the Fil-Am social gathering. Now on its second year, the Miss Fil-Am USA FL is more than just a beauty pageant, it’s also an event for a cause.
The Filipino American Social CLub Inc. (FASCI) has been a charity and non-profit organization for over a decade already. It is an exemplary organization in the Fil-Am community, having contributed time, effort, money and food to a plethora of worthy charities and causes, including international charities as ANCOP USA – Children’s Sponsorship Program, which provides education, health, and medical care for poor children in the Philippines; and Gawad Kalinga USA, which builds homes in the Philippines for the “poorest of the poor”.
This year’s candidates are all equally gorgeous and beautiful in their own rights. Representing their native Philippine hometowns, the girls competed in different categories. Representing the Province of Pampanga is Tiffany Long; Claire Picz held the sash of Biliran Province, while Arias Stanley represented the City of Tacloban, Leyte; a charming visayan lass, Mativa Blyden represented Cebu, while Joyous Eve Sobrepena proudly represented the Province of La Union.
A distinguished gentlemen and ladies composed the panel of the board of judges who determined the winner of the pageant which includes: Ms. Genevieve Corneta, Ms. Melody Garcia, Dr. Jose Raffinan, Mr. Jeremy Pascual Potvin, and Mr. Arinel Biglete.
The program was divided into four segments of competiton: Cultural Costume, Swimsuit, Evening Gown, and the Final Question and Answer round. Special awards were also given to the competitive girls who stood out in different categories namely:
Miss Photogenic – Ms. Tacloban
Best in Philippine Cultural Costume – Ms. Cebu
Best in Talent – Ms. La Union
Best in Swimsuit – Ms. Cebu
Best in Evening Gown – Ms. Tacloban
Fan Favorite Social Media Award – Ms. Biliran
People’s Choice Award – Ms. Pampanga
A Miss Universe style of Final Question and Answer portion was what the audience have witnessed that night, with matching “you can only answer the question in 30 seconds until you hear this…Ting!”. I know many would agree that having Q&A would help pageant followers to determine how smart, eloquent and spontaneous one’s person is, and as expected, the most witty of the candidates received the loudest applause, which also gave an instant guess as to who would eventually bring home the crown.
The winners of Miss Fil-Am USA FL 2016 declared!
Miss Fil-Am USA FL 2016: Ms. Tacloban, ARIAS STANLEY
First Runner Up: Ms. Cebu, Mativa Blyden
Second Runner Up: Ms. Biliran, Claire Picz
Third Runner Up: Ms. Pampanga, Tiffany Long
Fourth Runner UP: Ms. La Union, Joyous Eve Sobrepena
“For me, the candidates were all equally qualified to win the title. And I would like to personally thank each and everyone of them for the time, effort, and sacrifices they made in preparing for this pageant, and their support of the FASCI’s chosen charity for the year. I wish them all the great happiness and success in the future“, declares Ms. Gigi Gerbolingo Smith, FASCI President.
FASCI is a regional organization encompassing the entire Tampa Bay, Hernando and Pasco Counties, and surrounding area.