Pageants are constantly viewed as sexist and antiquated by those outside the planet of pageantry. Costumes from one pageant may not be helping change that stereotype. (Read: 5 Common Pageant Stereotypes and Why They Are Not True)
Miss Newcastle contestants spark controversy
The Miss Newcastle pageant has been held in the Civic Centre for the past decade. That is until this year’s organizers picked an unacceptable outfit for the contestants. The Newcastle City Council believes that the pageant does not “represent the values” that the authority is trying to portray, and therefore, the event can no longer be held at the Civic Centre.
The pageant occurred on June 2, 2017, and the organizer, Tyne Teen Models, chose a Hollywood theme for the event. The contestants, aged 16-23, wore Playboy Bunny outfits and competed in many other competitions. The organizer said it could not pick the Hollywood theme without some reference to the bunnies.
Next year’s pageant was not set to take place at the Civic Centre as the former organizers handed the pageant over to a new team after this year’s event. (Read: 3 Misconceptions Contestants Have of Pageant Directors)
The City Council comments on the pageant
The management turnover did not stop council members from criticizing Miss Newcastle and pageantry as a whole. Councillor Kim McGuinness said, “I feel more passionately about the advancement of women and girls than almost everything else and this makes me very uncomfortable. It was sexist when it was relevant, now it is positively antiquated.”
Another Newcastle City Council spokesperson said, “We pride ourselves on our commitment to fairness and equality across all our communities, and Civic Centre has played host to several events that support these values and priorities, aimed at safeguarding and providing support to the most vulnerable in our city.”
Miss England National Director distances from the Miss Newcastle event
Anne Beasley, National Director, said that she was surprised when she saw photos of the event because it is definitely not a part of the England pageant. (Read: Former Miss England’s Brother to Compete for Mr. England)
The managing director for the agency producing the pageant said she commonly has to explain misconceptions regarding the pageant. She explains that the contestants are smart and talented while being beautiful, too.
What do you all think? Inappropriate outfits or just a nod to Hollywood history? Let us know in the comments below.