Princess Hantsport to become Princess West Hants

Carole Morris-Underhill
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Council votes in favour of changing Apple Blossom princess role

WEST HANTS – The tradition of Princess Hantsport will live on, but it's evolving.

For the latest news coming out of the Municipality of West Hants, be sure to check this website.

West Hants council decided Tuesday night that the municipality would adopt the former Town of Hantsport's tradition of sponsoring a young woman to compete in the Apple Blossom Festival, but they voted to change things up a bit.

Princess Hantsport will no longer reign over the former town, nor will she retain the same title. She will be called Princess West Hants, and will represent the entire municipality. As such, any woman from the county will be able to apply.

As part of the dissolution process, which saw Hantsport join West Hants in July 2015, Chief Administrative Officer Cathie Osborne has been reviewing, integrating or updating former Hantsport policies and bylaws so that they are more in line with how West Hants does business. She brought forward the idea of still supporting a princess at council's Jan. 12 meeting.

“It's quite a well-supported event in the former Town of Hantsport. Rather than recommending we not do it, we're recommending that we adopt their model and their approach and (she) become a West Hants princess,” said Osborne.

Staff is also recommending that the Apple Blossom activities typically held in Hantsport – like the royal party visit following the coronation of Queen Annapolisa – continue to be held there.

Robbie Zwicker, who served as Hantsport's final mayor, currently sits on West Hants council. He supported the idea.

It's not a beauty contest. It's a leadership opportunity for young women that we grant and I think extending it in West Hants is fantastic,” said Zwicker.

But Paul Morton, a former Hantsport councillor who was elected to West Hants in a fall byelection, wasn't in agreement.

Hantsport's been doing it since Day 1. I really don't see the need to change it,” said Morton, before the vote.

It's just something that's been going on in Hantsport for years. It's something I think should stay in Hantsport,” he said, noting that other communities could select their own princess if they wanted to.

Coun. Jennifer Daniels questioned why they didn't just join with the Town of Windsor and select one woman to represent the entire area.

Why don't we just team up and call her Princess Avon?” asked Daniels.

Currently, Princess Windsor can be from anywhere in the West Hants or Windsor area. Princess Hantsport was generally from that community, or the nearby Mount Denson and Hants Border.

“I would love to see a Municipality of West Hants banner on one of the girls.” Coun. Shirley Pineo

“Hantsport's no longer a town, it's a community. Perhaps Summerville would like us to sponsor a princess for their area, or Brooklyn. The question is, do we have multiple representations or do we have one representation for West Hants?” said the CAO in response to Morton's suggestion.

She also noted that if they joined with Windsor, they would cut down on the number of young women that could participate in the pageant.

Coun. Shirley Pineo said she has long wanted to see West Hants have their very own princess.

“I've been trying to get a Princess West Hants for years. We always seem to have the girl that was the winner in Windsor and yet it was always called Princess Windsor but she was a West Hants girl,” said Pineo.

“I would love to see a Municipality of West Hants banner on one of the girls.”

Although not unanimous, council voted in favour of changing Princess Hantsport to Princess West Hants and allowing any young woman from the county to enter for the chance to represent the municipality.

As for funding, the CAO said they would continue to support Princess Windsor as well.


Organizations: West Hants council, Municipality of West Hants

Geographic location: Hantsport, Hants, Windsor Mount Denson Brooklyn

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Recent comments

  • Tom Joad
    January 14, 2016 - 12:31

    Ten bucks says the first Princess West Hants will have the last name of PINEO.

  • John Holmes
    January 14, 2016 - 07:15

    "It's a leadership opportunity". Sure thing Mayor Zwicker...maybe we should sign you up so you can learn how to be a leader.

  • Raye Myles
    January 13, 2016 - 23:37

    There will be no change to Princess Hantsport's title. The Hantsport Homecoming Music Festival has taken on the roll as main supporter of the princess going forward. We will be covering the ABF booster fees (registration fees) and the cost of maintaining the parade float. This commitment was made to the ABF late last year.

  • S. Jameson
    January 13, 2016 - 21:21

    Who cares, lets just do away with this tired and antiquated tradition. It's such a sad reminder of how this region is stuck in the past.

    • B. McDonald
      January 14, 2016 - 07:17

      Exactly. It's a great opportunity for young people they say...unless you're gay...or transgendered...or a boy...or a teenage parent...or your parents are divorced. Such an outdated pageant that fails to recognize diversity at all.