You could hardly go to a community event this past year without seeing Camelia Vokey.
The 19-year-old Penticton woman made a point of making appearances whenever possible in the lead up to the B.C. Ambassadors pageant earlier this month in Merritt.
“As candidacy we are encouraged — it’s not mandatory, but we are encouraged — to be out in the community, and it’s something I enjoy doing, so I wanted to attend every event that I could possibly attend,” she explained.
Vokey’s persistence paid off, and she was one of three ambassadors crowned.
“I’m just so excited for the year to come.
“I’m so excited to be out in the community and going around doing things at a higher level this time,” she said.
Eleven women were vying for one of three ambassador crowns.
They were judged on public speaking, B.C. knowledge and talents.
Vokey, a Miss Penticton princess in 2010-11, was unsuccessful last year in her first try in the B.C. Ambassador contest.
But Vokey wasn’t giving up so easily. She opted to re-enter to aid her recovery from injuries she sustained in a September 2012 car accident.
For the next year, she and the two other ambassadors will travel the province to visit fairs and pageants, “promoting the mandate of motivation, education and self-esteem,” Vokey said.
One of the outgoing ambassadors, Acacia Schmietenknop, told the Merritt Herald she attended 17 community pageants and 120 community events in her hometown of Kamloops during her reign.
“You only get one opportunity to do this, so you might as well make the most of it while you have the chance,” Schmietenknop said.
Along with the crown, Vokey also earned enough scholarship money to pay for her third year of human kinetics studies at UBC-Okanagan.
First, though, she’s hosting a community event of her own on Aug. 29 at 7 p.m. at the Victory Church in Penticton to reprise the speeches and talent performances she put on at the pageant.
There will also be a raffle and silent auction to help raise money for her upcoming travels.
With files from the Merritt Herald.