Kauai’s first beauty contest

The highlight of the Pono Carnival, held at Kapaa, Kauai on Saturday and Sunday, May 14 and 15, 1938, was Kauai’s first ever beauty contest, witnessed by about 6,000 spectators on a fine Sunday afternoon.

Miss Helen Jardine of Kalaheo was awarded a $50 first prize, Miss Angeline Rapozo of Kilauea was second among 25 entrants, and third place went to Miss Adeline Akana of Kilauea.

Other contestants included Miss Hannah Prigge, Miss Molly Lum, Miss Helen Kim, Miss Georgette Rodrigues, Miss Dolores Youn, Miss Fusae Shimizu, Miss Mary Rapozo, Miss Lorraine Bettencourt, Miss Agnes Corres, Miss Irene Villamero and Miss Lucy Gonsalves.

Contest judges were Lindsay A. Faye, Kekaha Sugar Co.; C.C. Carson, Kauai Ltd.; Ray Allen, Kilauea Sugar Co.; R.G. Bell, Kauai Pineapple Co.; Caleb Burns, Lihue Plantation, and Cedric Baldwin, McBryde Sugar Co.

An estimated 10,000 people attended the carnival, which was presented by the Pono Athletic Club for the benefit of its athletic fund under the chairmanship of territorial senator J.B. Fernandes.

Founded in 1937 by permanent employees of Hawaiian Canneries Co. of Kapaa at the suggestion of manager Albert Horner, the club developed its own coaching talent and business managers for 56 teams, with all of its 736 members participating in one sport or another.

At the Pono Carnival, the Hawaiian Pines baseball team defeated Kauai Pines and the Pono Club ballplayers were victorious over Hawaiian Pines.

A vaudeville show in the Big Tent offered a Filipino Fiesta with the Ramones Trio, assisted by Eusebio Lagundino in songs and dances.

Japanese dances were also performed, “Hop” Welch; magician, mesmerized the audience with his feats; hulas were offered by Elsie Akau and George Keawe; and Hawaiian melodies were played by Sam and William Ching, Clarence and George Ebinger, James Morita and Henry Sheldon.

Ventriloquist Howdy Reynolds of KGU radio and his dummy G-Man Joe entertained, with Reynolds acting as master of ceremonies and official announcer, and a big dance was held on Saturday night that featured a waltz contest.


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