Mexican Heritage Plaza

Last night, I had the great honor of attending San Jose’s Mexican Heritage Plaza for a guest appearance. The Mexican Heritage Plaza is a cultural center in the heart of East San Jose showcasing the Latino/Chicano culture through performances such as theater,singing and dancing. During my college years, my sorority Lambda Theta Nu Sorority, Inc., was heavily involved with the Plaza volunteering as ushers and guides for annual events so when I received an email from the director asking if I’d be able to attend upcoming shows, I was more than delighted to say yes. As soon as I arrived to the center, I was greeted by giddy elementary school girls who were in awe of meeting and taking pictures with a “beauty queen.” My parents, who also joined in the fun, offered to take behind the scenes photos* while I mingled with guests and promoted my title.

As I was speaking with guests and taking pictures, I had a feeling of such great fulfillment. Everyone who walked by and noticed my sash either complimented or congratulated me on my title. Having my family supporting me for such a small, local event meant so much to me because I could tell they too, were proud of my pageant accomplishments. Though I don’t know what my pageant life fate lies ahead of me, I’ve had an amazing time being involved with the community and a city I deeply adore.

*To see some photos of last night’s event, please visit my Photos page.

Kassie P.


Prom Night Strikes Again

Today I came to visit my parents house for a delicious home cooked meal… and quality time of course! While patiently waiting for dinner to be finished, I decided to try on my formal evening gown aka my high school prom dress. Yes, that’s right, I will be wearing my high school prom dress to the pageant! After all, it’s gorgeous, worn only one time* but more importantly, it still fits. When I first applied to enter Miss California Latina, I knew right away that my prom dress was going to be my go-to dress for the evening wear. The beaded jade hue, floor length dress, from Trudy’s Bridal in Campbell, Calif., was a hit on prom night so I figured wearing the dress again would give me that extra boost of “high school giddiness” and excitement.

For years, the delicate dress had been stored away in extra closet space at my parents house so I was pretty nervous to take it out of its cover slip to see how it has held up over the seasons. Carefully pulling the cover slip over the hanger, I was thrilled to see that no major wears and tears had taken place with the exception of a few beads that have gone M.I.A. Easing my way into the dress, I took a step back to take a look into the mirror and couldn’t believe I was instantly transported back to the year 2007. At that moment I felt a joy within me knowing that no matter what happens on the third and final day of competition, I’d be standing up on the stage in my beautiful gown feeling confident and amazing.

*Though I have only worn the dress once, the dress has actually been worn twice (as it was also my older sister’s prom dress). I fell in love with it when she wore it that I decided to wear it to my own prom. We both had amazing times at our events and now that I’ll be wearing it again, hopefully it will bring me that extra touch of luck. After all, they say third times a charm!


Kassie P.

The Chosen One

After celebrating a late Father’s Day dinner with my family yesterday evening, I was finally able to show my relatives all of the thumbnails from my photo shoot. As you know, I’m required to send in a head shot to the pageant to be showcased on the website as well as the weekend booklet. Up until yesterday evening, I hadn’t yet chosen the final picture simply because I wanted my family’s input…aka my mother’s final approval. As we laid on the bed swiping from left to right and right to left on my mother’s IPad, we finally agreed to Photo #6518.*

When my photos first came in, I had screenshot a few pictures from my phone and excitedly sent them to my family showing a few snapshots. I hadn’t had much time to visit my parent’s house until the celebration of my step-dad so yesterday was the first real chance I had to show all of the thumbnails. As mentioned, we spent quite some time choosing the final picture and ironically we noticed the picture we chose yesterday happened to be the same exact one I randomly sent to my parents a few weeks back.

Since the photos were just proofs, I’ll now just need to let my photographer know I’d like to have Photo #6518 properly cropped and sized to send to Miss California Latina. As mentioned in previous posts, I’m very close to my family and I’m thrilled I’m getting to share this experience with them in all aspects of the pageant. I value their opinions very much and I enjoy taking their thoughts into consideration on the smallest details of this journey, like a simple picture, for I will not only be representing myself on stage but also my family.

*To view Photo #6518 please visit my Photos page.


Kassie P.