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Hi‘ilei Berg wins Miss Hawai‘i Jr. Elementary America 2023 pageant; advances to nationals

Hi‘ilei Berg, the reigning Little Miss Kaua‘i, earned the crown of Miss Hawai‘i Jr. Elementary America 2023 Sunday at the Paliku Theatre on the campus of Windward Community College, announced her coach, Avery Kano, who is one of the Miss Kaua‘i Princess Pageant directors.

“When announcing the first runner-up to the pageant, it was noted there was a difference of just 0.1 point,” Kano said. “En route to winning the state title, Hi‘ilei tied with her eventual first runner-up for the ‘Best in Evening Gown’ competition, and also won the ‘Best Theme Wear’ that was a ‘Peace &Love’ theme.”

Hi‘ilei, with the guidance of her sewing instructor Barbara Greene, sewed her own outfit that consisted of leftover fabric scraps that was inspired by fashion from the hippie culture.

“Sewing being one of her favorite hobbies, Hi‘ilei wanted to take on this challenge and show off her skills,” Kano said. “The outfit took more than 20 hours to create.”

En route to the Miss Hawai‘i Jr. Elementary America crown, Hi‘ilei also picked up honors in the Academic, Community Service and Top Model judging. These honors did not count toward her eventual title.

With her new crown, Hi‘ilei will represent Hawai‘i in the national “Miss Elementary America 6th Grade” pageant that will be held in Little Rock, Arkansas in June 2023. This 2021 title was held by a Hawai‘i Island native, Aspen Taylor Hanohano.

“Hi‘ilei will continue to be active in the community as well as promoting the pageant’s national platform of Building Respect And Values for Everyone,” Kano said.

She is the daughter of Devi and Jordan Berg.

Kano and Sarah Manuel were part of the team that coached Xarika Casticimo to a Miss Kaua‘i Filipina crown in June, and later the Miss Hawai‘i Filipina crown just two weeks ago.

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Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 808-245-0453 or dfujimoto@thegardenisland.com.
Source: The Garden Island

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