Taiau Nicholas graced the catwalk in Auckland wearing her beautifully sewn muumuu, and later received the overall prize in the Mama Rauti Para event.
Designed for mature Cook Islands women 55 years and over, 11 took to the stage and showcased their individual styled muumuu’s, entertaining the audience with their grace, humour and unique designs.
Organiser Carmena Wong nee Blake said they celebrate and honour beautiful Cook Islands women through this event.
The event has a great significance to her.
“It is because I treasure, honour and celebrate my own mother and all the Mama Rauti Para who are always there for each of us.”
Wong was delighted to see her dream grow and blossom into an anticipated event which started last year.
A surprise was also in store for the contestants this year – four young handsome island warriors escorted the delighted women to the stage.
The women embraced the energy of the younger men, who boosted their confidence, said Wong.
The first appearance was the pareu category followed by the traditional muumuu dress, judged by Chris Wong, Naomi Dashwood and Valerie Taruia-Pora.
Entertainment on the evening was provided by John Kiria and band, emcee Ngaire Karati, script reader Tauraki Rongo, Mama Rauti Para convener and chaperone Angelyse Armstrong, stage management and lighting Duane and Tutes, photographer Gerardus Verspeek, and videographer Adrian McBirney.
The awards are as follows: Mama Rauti Para 2019 is Taiau Nicholas, 1st runner-up Vaine Arai Areora, 2nd Runner-up Mii Hinarere I te Poerava Tupangaia. Category Winners: Traditional Muumuu - Mii Hinarere I te Poerava Tupangaia, Pareu Muumuu - Vaine Arai Areora, Creative Muumuu - Taiau Nicholas. Miss Personality - Taiau Nicholas, Oldest Mama: Vaine Arai Areora. Audience Special Awards: Traditional Muumuu: Mama Maiono, Pareu Muumuu - Tepaeru French.