Fashion for a Cause

Photo courtesy Suzette Parraga-Kahana.

Molokai Filipina to compete in Mrs. Hawaii Filipina Pageant

Local resident and business owner Suzette Parraga-Kahana will be representing Molokai this year at the upcoming Mrs. Hawaii Filipina Scholarship & Charity Pageant, a state-wide competition held every year to raise scholarship funds for Filipino youth. This year’s pageant will take place on Oahu July 13.

Earlier this year, members of the Molokai Filipino Community Council, a subsidiary of the United Filipino Council of Hawaii (UFCH), asked Parraga-Kahana to represent Molokai in this year’s pageant. Her participation would qualify youths of Filipino descent from Molokai to apply for scholarships through the UFCH, said Parraga-Kahana.

“I’m really excited to do this because it is my opportunity to give back to my community and help the youth of Molokai,” she said.

The Kauai native is no stranger to the pageantry business. Before moving to Molokai seven years ago Parraga-Kahana participated in multiple pageants, even securing the Ms. Latina Hawaii title in 1980. On Molokai, she started her own beauty salon, Dezigns by Suzette.

There are three main components of the competition –a judges’ interview, a traditional Filipina evening gown, or terno, fashion show and a talent portion.

“Suzette has a lot of background with pageantry because she has actually coordinated a lot of the state pageants like Ms. Hawaii Filipina and she knows the ins and outs of the pageants already,” said Yolanda Reyes, President of the Molokai Filipino Club. Reyes said that there have not been any participants from Molokai in the Mrs. Hawaii Filipina pageant for many years.

“We are very proud of her and I think she will represent Molokai very well,” said Reyes.
The pageant is open to married, divorced, legally separated or widowed females of Filipino ancestry between the ages 21 to 65. No prior pageant experience is necessary to participate.

Parraga-Kahana said she is still looking for sponsorship from the community. To support her or the Mrs. Hawaii Filipina Pageant, call 553-5812.


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