Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Cumberland Lincoln 09-20-2018

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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10 CUMBERLAND SEPTEMBER 20-26, 2018 | VALLEY BREEZE | CUMBERLAND LINCOLN EDITION CUMBERLAND – With hours to go before her Portugal-bound flight departed on Monday, Anastasia DeCosta Pattison was ensuring her gowns were properly packed and every detail of her trip in order. For this young pageant queen ready to jet into the opportunity of a lifetime, no detail was too small. Pattison, a Cumberland High School senior, said she's always gained inspiration from pageant competitors. This summer, she fol- lowed the encouragement of her mother and friends as she entered and ultimately was crowned Miss Dia de Portugal Rhode Island on June 10. "When they did call my name, I was shocked," the 17-year-old recalled. "I actually accomplished and overcame something. I did feel real- ly blessed because my mother was the one who really pushed me to do it. All I could think about was the title and all the ways I could repre- sent my Portuguese community in Rhode Island." The win has brought her into the social media spotlight and landed her a competition invitation from the organization behind Miss Queen Portugal, a Portuguese pageant spotlighting the country's brightest while emphasizing environmental issues. Pattison will show her hard work on stage over her stay in Portugal, which began Tuesday and runs through this Sunday, as she repre- sents the U.S. in the pageant, with hopes of moving on to the Miss Earth pageant in November. As a second-generation Portuguese-American, Pattison noted she is proud to have the opportunity to represent her cul- ture from her unique perspective that has developed within the community as a nine-year main- stay with Cumberland's folklore group Danças e Cantares of Clube Juventude Lusitana. The high school student has also broadened her passions through extracurricular endeavors from softball to her volunteer efforts as a Special Olympics mentor. Pattison, who hopes to attend Rhode Island College to study nurs- ing, noted she's especially thrilled to call attention to the Portuguese community in New England. "I really want to highlight that aspect of New England," she said of what she hopes to share in Portugal. "I want to show them that we cel- ebrate the culture just like them but in a different region." This process, though, has not been free of obstacles. Since entering the local pageant, Pattison made every effort to stare down one of her greatest fears: public speaking. "That was something I needed to learn in a short amount of time," she explained, noting that recent radio and television interviews have helped her develop skills. "It's pre- pared me for, now, Miss Queen, Portugal." Practicing with her mother, Jackie DeCosta, and pageant coach, Suzette Sousa, the young competitor said she has learned to tackle talk- ing points while presenting herself with confidence in a roomful of judges. The costs and necessities of pag- eantry add up quickly, too. She's raised funds through the Miss Dia de Portugal committee and a raffle at the Our Lady of Fatima Feast as well as pooling her own funds earned through two part-time jobs. She also credits the generosity of her family and friends who donated dollars and dresses, as well as the groundswell of support from across Rhode Island. She said every donation and encouraging conversation pushed her closer to Portugal as she and her mother prepared for their trip. Her travel necessities included three long gowns, a half-dozen cocktail gowns, another suitcase full of day clothes, and about nine pairs of shoes. "It's crazy," she said. "I had to pay an extra fee because I know I'm going to bring back something from Portugal." Beyond souvenirs, Pattison said she hopes to carry home a breadth of pageant industry know-how, knowledge she hopes to put to use in next September's Miss Teen Rhode Island competition. "I think that would be an amaz- ing accomplishment as well," she added. "In the meantime, I can continue educating myself on speech and presence." Cumberland teen takes Portuguese pride to international stage By DIANDRA MARKGRAF Valley Breeze Contributing Writer ANASTASIA DECOSTA PATTISON, a Cumberland High School senior who was crowned Miss Dia de Portugal Rhode Island in June, is in Portugal this week representing the United States in an international pageant. 1250 Mineral Spring Avenue, North Providence, RI 02904 401-723-6770 • 9:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. (Mon. - Fri.) Suburban Travel & Amawaterways Cruise Night Kirkbrae Country Club We invite you to learn more about River Cruising with Stephen Batjiaka Please RSVP before Oct 19th Contact Christy or Karen at Suburban Travel. 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