A Kelowna woman now holds the title of Ms. Senior World 50.
Laura Draycott was the only Canadian to compete in the Ms. Senior World Pageant in Biloxi, Mississippi and was crowned queen for the age 50 to 59 category on Nov. 4.
The pageant queen told Black Press she’s still in shock.
“My head is still spinning. I haven’t unpacked all this mentally.”
Draycott said when she arrived in Biloxi they did a meet and greet with all the competitors, explored the community and its surrounding area, and did some shopping. There were rehearsals and choreography to learn for the opening number in the days leading up to the pageant.
“One of those days was an interview day where we had five judges, the judging panel brought us in one-by-one and gave us our pageant interviews. That was worth 30 per cent of our mark,” Draycott said she thought it went alright and credited the advice of the former queen to part of her success, that “they’re just people like you and they want to know about you… Pretend that they just want to be your friend.
“They absolutely knew who we were when we came in. They probably Googled us and looked at all our social media and asked us lots of rapid-fire, detailed questions about ourselves.”
The pageant ran over two days with preliminaries and finals. The women competed in a fashion runway, an activewear runway, and an evening gown runway.
Draycott won several awards for her performance, including the evening gown award, the active lifestyle award, and the one she was most proud to receive the career achievement award.
“The judges really went through and looked at what you’d done in your life. I’m almost 60, so I’ve done a little bit of stuff. I think they just saw I worked hard and I started a business in my 50s, I re-educated myself in my 50s, I used to be a chiropractor, and just all the things I’ve done… I didn’t even know the award existed until they announced me on stage.”
But the ultimate prize was winning the crown.
“I was shocked, overjoyed, I was trying not to cry,” Draycott said. She commended Dana Wimmer for taking home the second-place prize for the second year in a row. “I actually thought she was going to win, so, to win and have her as runner-up, she was so sweet and so gracious.”
As the only Canadian in the pageant and now the 50s queen, Draycott was very proud to represent Canada in such a way.
Draycott won’t compete in the pageant next year as she will be the outgoing queen assisting and offering advice to the new pageant contestants. Although there are no current plans to enter another pageant, Draycott said it’s not out of the question for the future.
Anyone interested in competing in next year’s Ms. Senior World Pageant can contact Draycott through her Instagram. The queen is ready to empower women of all ages to be their best selves.