The only thing better than two royals representing the City of Trail, is three.
Instead of crowning Miss Trail 2015 and one princess, this year all three Trail Ambassador candidates are assured a crown and an equal sharing of royalty opportunities.
The Trail Ambassador Program was at risk of being cancelled entirely when so few young ladies signed on to be part of the annual competition, which awards the queen and princess titles during Silver City Days.
The three girls, Timberlyn Miles, Gina Oostlander and Serena Deadmarsh, so inspired program coordinators Bev Benson and Michelle Epp, that they were determined the show would go on.
“These girls have been so dedicated even though they knew in December that there might not be a program this year,” said Benson.
“But they still showed up at every city function to volunteer. They’ve inspired us to look at this as a new opportunity.”
All three J.L. Crowe Secondary students will be titled Trail Ambassador and travel to future events and parades in other communities as a pair or trio.
First, they are expected to complete all the requirements of the program, including speech writing and presentation, a community project, continued volunteerism, and preparing a talent as well as three-hour training sessions every Sunday in the Greater Trail Community Centre.
While the culmination of the program won’t be the traditional Friday night pageant, there will be an open reception to showcase the girls’ work.
“We don’t know what that will be yet, but there will be a celebration,” said Benson.
“There needs to be a special moment for the crowning and for the retiring girls.”
The three candidates agree that with competition off the table, there is some breathing room. However, the program continues to challenge them with confidence-boosting skills like public speaking and greeting a crowd,
“My family and friends tried to convince me to do this for the last two years,” said Miles, a Grade 12 student and Miss Trail Legion. “I thought of my cousins and wanted to be a role model for them so this year is my last chance to be in the program. But getting up in front of people is still definitely a big thing for me, because I tend to stutter when I am nervous.”
Oostlander is Miss Knights of Pythias. She’s a Grade 11 student with a passion for sports including basketball, soccer and field hockey, which Oostlander says aren’t the typical traits people equate to a Trail Ambassador competitor.
“A lot of people told me I shouldn’t do this program, they think I am too busy,” she explained “But they also see someone who is athletic and don’t think of her as a candidate for Miss Trail.
“But I like proving people wrong. So I am going to grow and develop and do something that is different.”
Representing Miss Colombo is Grade 11 student Serena Deadmarsh, and she agrees with Oostlander.
“It’s good to do something that is not necessarily ‘you,’” she said. “And show that you can go outside of your comfort zone to try something new.”