Seven women from Berwyn and the surrounding communities competed to be the Houby Queen in the 42nd annual pageant Friday at the Skylite West banquet hall. The prize: a $500 college scholarship, the title of queen and a chance to debut at Sunday’s parade.
The women were judged on biographical statements, talent, an evening gown competition and their answers in the famous question-and-answer session that is a staple to every beauty pageant. However, their solo performances weren’t the only deciding factors. The women were also judged on their attendance and participation throughout the preparation for the competition.
The three-hour event allowed the women to show a wide range of talents. Judges and attendees were treated to hip-hop, pom and belly dancing, singing, acting, flower arranging and cello playing.
Unfortunately, not everyone could go home with a trophy that night, but three women did. Victoria Rose Peralta took home the title of Miss Congeniality, picked by all the contestants as the most friendly and best participant. The first runner-up was Monica Guzman, who performed an interpretive dance dedicated to her late grandmother.
The winner of 2010’s Houby Queen Pageant was Jane Frances Malina who said, during her Q&A session, that if she had the power to change the world she would: “Make it possible for all kids to have a good education containing music and art so they can be well rounded.”
One of the guests, Illinois Rep. Elizabeth “Lisa” Hernandez, D-Cicero, applauded the dedication of the contestants and the talent they represented. “You hear a lot about the bad, but we have a lot of good kids, and this right here is a perfect example,” she said.