Meet Your 2012 Los Angeles Cover Girl

Alicia Garcia de Angela

Shelbi Byrnes is the 2012 Los Angeles cover girl for Magazine.

When Shelbi Byrnes told the judges panel at the semifinals for Magazine’s Los Angeles cover girl contest that singing was her favorite activity, no one could imagine she would dare to perform one of singing sensation Adele’s hit songs. With that impromptu performance, there was no doubt that Shelbi could sing and that she has an extraordinary artistic vocation.

Shelbi seemed to be born to be onstage, something that can be due to her hometown, Las Vegas.  Every since she was a little girl she has dreamed of becoming a singer, model, or actress, and now at 15, Shelbi writes her own songs, creates choreographies, is part of her school’s chorus, and has participated in several musicals.

Celebrating her Quinceañera this October is what has her most excited. “It is a way of bringing together everyone who is important in my life,” she states. “We will have it in Las Vegas in a friend’s nice backyard, a total of 150 family members and friends will be there celebrating with me, dancing, and having fun.”

Photography: Patty Monroy

For Shelbi, daughter of a Cuban mother and Mexican father, having a Quinceañera is a dream come true. “I wanted to have one since I was a little girl. When I picture myself dressed as a princess surrounded by my court, I realize how lucky I am.” Seven chambelanes wearing blue ties and six damas dressed in blue will be part of her court. “Among my damas are my three best friends who always cheered me up whenever I was sad,” she adds.

When it comes to the theme for her party, our cover girl chose butterflies as the main decorative element. Her dress is a design by Tony Bowls, from Mon Cheri Bridals, the bridal shop where her mother has worked for over 10 years. “I’ve always liked their designs and I’ll finally get to wear one. It’ll be pink with a bow across and with diamonds. I couldn’t ask for more”. Magazine Los Angeles Edition


With the day approaching, party planning is on a fast track. Shelbi’s mother, Maria Byrnes, is in charge of getting it all together. “I would not be able to have my Quinceañera without my mom since there is so much to plan and organize. I admire her for the hardwork and for the caring woman she is, always prioritizing others’ needs and helping whenever necessary.”



On a personal note, there are morals that without a doubt have shaped Shelbi, who commits her free time helping less fortunate children in a Las Vegas mission. “I consider myself to be a positive role model, and helping children in need makes me happy. Which is why I decided to donate part of the prize money I receive from the contest to this organization.”

“Joy Prom” is another of Shelbi’s projects where she helps in the organization of full-scale proms for teenagers and adults with cognitive and physical impairments. “I enjoy seeing these kids dressed to their best for the occasion. This is a great cause.”

An issue that concerns Magazine’s reigning cover girl is bullying, which she thinks could have a lasting, negative impact on its victims. Shelbi speaks from experience as she once was a victim due to her dyslexia. “Whenever I read out loud, my classmates would make fun of me, so I know exactly what bullying victims go through. I think everyone should be treated equally, that is why  I help kids at school that are going through this.”

She does not share too much regarding her personal affairs, perhaps because her mother is in front of her. She approves of dating at her age, but advices that girl’s her age set boundaries in order to avoid unwanted situations.

Although she acknowledges her musical talents, Shelbi plans to attend college and graduate as a special education teacher to continue helping those in need. So far, Shelbi seems to be focused on being a great student at Calvary Chapel Christian School in Las Vegas, practicing soccer with her peers, and planning a perfect and dreamy Quinceañera.

Alicia Garcia de Angela

Author Alicia Garcia de Angela

Sr. Director of Content and Communications at & EC Hispanic Media. Find out more about me here. Google+

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