Twenty five year old art teacher, Kennese Ann-Marie Watson is the 2007 Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC) St. Elizabeth Festival Queen, after she captured the hearts of most of the patrons and seven judges with her thrilling performance. She walked away with the prestigious crown ahead of nine other talented contestants at the Coronation Show at the St. Elizabeth Technical High School in Santa Cruz recently.
A beaming Watson, a teacher at Maggoty High School who wore the sash 'Flava's Boutique' and who sported a dreadlocks hairstyle also copped the most sectional prizes and cash awards.
She was judged the most culturally aware, best performer and most poised. Her winnings include $15,000 for sectional prizes, $20,000 for the top prize, a television set, cell phone and wall robe from a fashion house.
"I am very excited and elated that I have been chosen as the Miss St. Elizabeth Festival Queen. And I am going to utilize this platform to do my very best to be the best cultural ambassador that I can be, and hopefully go on to Kingston to take the crown for my parish", said the well-spoken Watson.
"I think I have a very pretty strong chance of coming back with the crown. That will be my mandate since St. Elizabeth has never won it before. So I plan to go to Kingston and do my utmost best to ensure that St. Bess have the crown".
The new queen who received the crown from the former queen Miss Tishauna McMaster was flanked by first runner up, 23 year old Amelia Tomlinson, also a teacher who wore the sash, Quality Dealers, received $15,000 and $5,000 for being most disciplined, while 24 year old music teacher, Ornisea Williams took home $10,000 for placing third.
Gabriel Campbell was voted most congenial and Janice Heron, most improved, while 21-year-old Renee Williams and 21-year-old Kennise Pinnock were the other two contestants placed in the top five.
Despite a few technical hitches, the show went well, and MC Derrick Wilks from the RJR Communication Group was quite good, said a delightful Parish Cultural Organizer, Mrs. Vivien Morris-Brown. "We had a few hitches but away from that, it was great a show and the girls performed, excellently", she said.