By Joan Cronk
Choir president, state solo and ensemble participant and Advanced Placement scholar Casey Park is the 2014 Graham-Kapowsin High School Daffodil Festival princess.
Park was chosen last Wednesday evening in a ceremony held at the school auditorium.
One of six participants, Park hopes to continue her education in college, majoring in wildlife biology with a minor in music.
Master of ceremonies Ryan Morris said Park hopes to “explore the world and then save it.”
Other princess contestants were Jordan Iyall, Kalabria Fleming, Micaela Woodley, Kallee Debord and Denis Julio.
All contestants were asked to speak on the 2014 Daffodil Festival theme of “Ready, set, grow.”
Park described a Halloween when she waited too long to purchase a pumpkin for carving and had to settle for an acorn squash, instead. After carving the squash, she tossed it into her yard, where it rewarded her the next spring with a variety of new squash.
To the question “What aspect of the Daffodil organization do you most look forward to participating, in and why,” Park replied she was looking forward to all aspects, but most of all the connections she would make with other princesses and young children.
Daffodil Festival executive director Steve James said the Daffodil princesses will interact with 65,000 children and 80,000 adults during their reign. “They will learn to always put others before themselves. They are Ambassadors,” he said.
The 2013 Graham-Kapowsin Daffodil princess, Amy Bernstein, talked about her experience last year and said other princesses had inspired her. Her advice to the new princess was to “always be aware of the little things and enjoy the year.”
Graham-Kapowsin English teacher and Daffodil coordinator Christine Fuller said the contestants had to have a 3.2 or higher grade point average in order to participate.
“They have done a lot of community service and are leaders,” she said.
Fuller helped them practice poise and rehearse their speeches before Wednesday evening’s event.
“This is my third year as coordinator, and I love working with the girls. They are leaders of the community,” she said.
Park and princesses from 23 other high schools in Pierce County will represent their schools and communities in festival events, including the Grand Floral Parade in April. One princess will be named the festival’s queen.