By Emily Norman
Before Friday’s Bride of the Year, Alastair Scott had never judged an event.
Well, except for a pet lamb day – “but other than that I had never judged anything in my life”, the Wairarapa MP said.
Nineteen Wairarapa brides vied for the title of Bride of the Year on Friday night, but only one woman took out the top award.
Sara Atkins, nee Hurley, was crowned as Masterton Plunket’s 47th Bride of the Year winner, with other award winners being Levana Tufuga, nee Hampson, highly commended, Philippa Holmes, nee Lynch, commended, and Kellie Brice, nee Merson, as winner of the Rochelle Burnard Cup for the most original or innovative gown.
Judges on the night were Danielle Burkhart, owner of Hebe Designer Boutique, Jane Davis, CO of Carterton District Council, and Alastair Scott, Wairarapa MP.
“It was good fun, you could see the brides were all being reminded of their own wedding day,” Mr Scott said.
“It was very nice to see all their families there as well, seeing the beautiful bride again.”
He said it was great to see all the brides put themselves out there and give it a go – “it was better than the pet lamb competition”.
Masterton Plunket convenor Margaret Bourke said it was a very successful event, with well over 200 people attending the awards at Copthorne Hotel and Resort, Solway Park.
“Judges had a very difficult job because all the girls were so beautiful,” she said.
As this year’s winner, Mrs Atkins, took home a queen mattress and base, valued at $2600, cluster stud earrings with 0.2 carat diamonds, $749, and other gifts from Wairarapa businesses.
The competition was open to brides married between August 1, 2015 and July 31, 2016 who were married in Wairarapa, have lived in Wairarapa, or whose husband has lived in Wairarapa.
Last year Ana Whiteacre-Burt (nee Whiteacre) took top honours.