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Miss American Samoa heading to Miss Pacific Islands competition

Miss American Samoa Epifania Petelo (middle) as Taupou for the traditional Ava ceremony for the opening of the Tatau Festival at the Taumeasina Island Resort on Thursday in Apia,
”Pacific We Are, One Step, One Aspiration”

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — Miss American Samoa, Epifania Petelo, accompanied by Simeafou Imo, president of the Miss American Samoa Inc. (MASI), departed the territory Tuesday this week heading to Apia en route to Papua New Guinea for the 2019- 2020 Miss Pacific Islands Pageant, where she will vie for the regional title against 13 other contestants.

This past Sunday, was the Mass held at the Holy Family Cathedral at Fatuoaiga for a spiritual blessing send-off for Petelo, whose family attends the St. Joseph Catholic Church. Lt. Gov. Lemanu Palepoi Sialega Mauga, the acting governor, represented the governor and ASG.

Miss American Samoa Facebook page is providing updates on Petelo’s journey to PNG.  “Thank you to everyone who donated to help my team and I with our preparations, your words of encouragement, all your prayers, and thank you for your generous support,” wrote in a posting early this week upon arrival in Samoa.

Petelo and Imo stayed at Taumeasina Resort, which provided two free nights for the winner of the Miss American Samoa 2019- 2020, before heading to New Zealand for the flight to PNG for a weeklong pageantry events, which kicks off on Nov. 24th, with the finale, the “Crowning Ball” on Nov. 30th at the Stanley Hotel And Suites in Port Moresby.

The reigning Miss Pacific Islands is Leishina Mercy Kariha, who represented PNG during last year’s pageant in Tonga when she was 18-years old.

This year’s Pageant Theme is ”Pacific We Are, One Step, One Aspiration”, according to the Miss Pacific Islands facebook page, which is providing brief updates as contestants from the Pacific arrive at Port Moresby.

Besides American Samoa, there are 13 other beauty queens, including Miss Samoa Fonoifafo McFarland-Seumanu vying for the 2019- 2020 title. The Miss Pacific Islands facebook page provides the list of all contestants.