SCDF and Posh signs agreement
PHILIPSBURG--St. Maarten Carnival Development Foundation (SCDF) announced on Wednesday that it has outsourced the organisation and complete control of its three major pageants to entertainment agency Posh Productions Incorporated (PPI), a move that SCDF is confident will redefine pageantry on St. Maarten.
It is another first for SCDF, which has always kept the control of the pageants in-house. According to Carnival Director Mike Granger, it was time for the foundation to let other Carnival stakeholders have a more direct say into some of its long-standing events. He said Carnival pageantry in particular needed an overhaul and the foundation believes Posh Productions is the entity to accomplish this. “There are Carnival enthusiasts that are just as passionate about Carnival as we are. It is time to bring some of these folks into the fold and spread the knowledgebase of Carnival.”
The outsourcing means that PPI is now solely responsible for hosting the Teen, Senior and Ms. Mature Carnival Queen Pageants, which all carry title-branding of TelCell. PPI will be responsible for all aspects of the pageants, with SCDF only playing a facilitating role. In essence, PPI is now the promoter of the three events and everything associated with them. PPI, self-proclaimed “pageant professionals,” is the brainchild of former pageant queens Anna Rabess-Richardson and Cassandra Weekes-Jeffers. Rabess-Richardson is the company’s Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer.
PPI’s dedicated goal is to provide and promote wholesome entertainment in fashion, arts, music, theatre, pageantry and all other forms of unified community enhancement events. Its core objectives include assisting and strengthening the entertainment and tourism industry through highlighting the island’s “cultural heritage and natural talents with promotional packages and advertisements that will draw participants, spectators and viewers locally, regionally and internationally,” as described in the release. Rabess-Richardson said they believe in the business of pageantry and will introduce new “sparkle” to the crown and each titleholder, adding that the company is “committed to empowering young women by helping them realize their potential via a competitive yet collaborative effort to build confidence through scholarship and professional opportunities.”
The mission is to “promote philanthropy through strong community-based services and involvement, while flooding the community with fearless, authentic, and intelligent role models,” and its vision to “foster goodwill ambassadors by encouraging individual growth, personal platforms, community involvement and awarding scholarships for educational and/or career advancement.” The company “celebrates women for having the courage and confidence to embrace their natural beauty with pride while presenting their inner beauty to the world.”
“While there are many stereotypical opinions about pageantry, the emphasis of talent, interview, platforms, and question-answer segments, is affirmation of how pageants have moved away from aesthetics and requires contestants to be well-spoken, knowledgeable, and graceful young ladies who are passionate about a purpose,” Rabess-Richardson said.
Themes and prizes will target representatives who are also interested in educational and professional advancement, improving public-speaking, interview and people skills and developing their community involvement by actively participating in service organisations for the betterment of the contestants and St. Maarten.
The final products of PPI “will be events to look forward to, especially with the introduction of upcoming platforms such as the “Pageant Professionals Scholarship Project” and the “SXM Girls Rock” motivational campaign. The scholarship project is a part of the contestants’ prize package and is being established to empower women by creating opportunities to meet role models, act on the personal and professional goals, and to achieve those goals with the assistance of monetary grants and awards. “SXM Girls Rock” stands against underage sex, substance abuse, teenage pregnancy, neglect, depression, bullying, crime, violence and other ills that the youth and society in general are faced with.
Pageantry experts such as coaches, chaperones, beauticians, cosmetologists, and costume designers are encouraged to share their services and contact information at www. poshsxm.com, to easily link potential contestants with professionals to assist them with building packages.
Registration for 2016 pageants opens Tuesday September 1 and closes November 1 at 11:59pm.
For more information, visit the website or contact Rabess-Richardson at or Weekes-Jeffers at firstname.lastname@example.org.