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Pageant queen takes her crown to the world

Sahar Biniaz has been invited to cheer on Canada’s team at the prestigious Bocuse d’Or cooking competition in Lyon, France  - Porus Vimadalal photo
Sahar Biniaz has been invited to cheer on Canada’s team at the prestigious Bocuse d’Or cooking competition in Lyon, France
— image credit: Porus Vimadalal photo

She’s owned the Miss Universe Canada crown for eight months and now Richmond’s own Sahar Biniaz is ready to make a splash outside Canada.

Biniaz has been invited to cheer on Canada’s team at the prestigious Bocuse d’Or cooking competition in Lyon, France Jan. 29. Next month she’ll go back to school—at the New York Film Academy—on a full scholarship, and in April hopes to hike Mount Everest.

“Sometimes we set limitations for ourselves,” said Biniaz in an interview. “So this is a great way for me to say don’t give up—keep going for it.”

A foot injury kept Biniaz out of December’s global Miss Universe competition. The experience of sitting on the sidelines, instead of being on stage, strengthened her desire to achieve her goals.

In France she’ll be cheering on local chef Alex Chen of Moxie’s Classic Grill, who will represent Canada in a culinary competition that pits the best chefs from 24 countries against each other.

“This is a really, really big event. For fine dining chefs this is one of the biggest competitions in the world. For Canada to be participating in it is very very exciting,” said Biniaz.

After that, she’ll move to New York City to continue her education in a field where she’s already comfortable. Biniaz stars in the independent film Ambrosia, released last summer, and also stars Camyar Chai, the City of Richmond’s arts co-ordinator. The film, which was accepted in the Montreal World Film Festival last year, is the story of an Iranian-Canadian couple whose dream of an exciting future in Vancouver is derailed.

Biniaz has signed on as executive producer of a new film project exploring the shame South Asian girls are made to feel following abuse.

Biniaz, a graduate of R.C. Palmer, also continues to bring awareness to numerous causes. On Everest, she plans to plant a pink flag in honour of one such cause—raising awareness of bullying.

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