A glimpse of royalty

Published 9:13 am Wednesday, March 30, 2016

It’s not every day that you get to hang out with an honest to goodness beauty queen. But that’s exactly what a bunch of excited Southampton County elementary school students – and one unusually attentive newspaper staff – got to do last Thursday. The reigning Miss Virginia, Savannah Lane, spent the morning doing programs at Capron and Riverdale Elementary schools, and helped judge a pageant at Riverdale later that evening. In between, she spent some time with us here at The Tidewater News. She is even more charming and engaging than she is beautiful, which is really saying something. Her passion for inspiring children is obvious and genuine. Her singing voice is divine. The Miss Virginia program could not have a more worthy representative.

There are several people to whom credit is owed for making her appearance possible. Friend and local resident Abbey Webb, who became friends with Savannah on the state pageant circuit, first approached the idea of having Miss Virginia judge the Riverdale pageant. The CITGO fuel company provides financial support to the Miss Virginia program and fuel cards to help ease the cost of travel expenses, allowing Miss Virginia to crisscross the Commonwealth of Virginia during the 365 days of her tenure. The Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control sponsors her school appearances in order to help educate children about the importance of not succumbing to peer pressure. And her publicist, M.C. Gravely, was gracious in creating a schedule that gave us the opportunity to learn more about her platform and inspiring personal story, and not just document her visit to the area.

To all who made Miss Virginia’s visit possible, we thank you. Hundreds of kids, and a few kids-at-heart, thoroughly enjoyed her brief but meaningful time in Western Tidewater.