, Muskogee, OK

Local News

October 12, 2013

Fort Gibson queen relishes excitement of event

All school queen says coronation plays second fiddle to state championship

FORT GIBSON — Excitement at being crowned Fort Gibson’s all school queen was one of many feelings Savannah Gray felt Friday.

And it was a long day.

“I woke up super early and did my hair, did my makeup,” Savannah said as friends crowded around her for congratulations. “The school kings and queens were dismissed from school.”

Savannah, daughter of Rodney and Denise Gray, was among 28 all school queen candidates, each representing a different high school organization.

Janet Freeling, a coordinator for Friday’s coronation, said this year had the most queen candidates ever.

“We added several new ones,” Freeling said, listing Special Olympics and Tiger Vision multimedia among the new entries.

Although each queen candidate rode in the parade and participated in the coronation, the all school queen was not announced until a ceremony before Friday night’s game against the Poteau Pirates.

Some other area schools announce their queen before the coronations.

Savannah, who represented basketball, said she likes the Fort Gibson version better.

“It’s more exciting,” she said. “I like it better than knowing ahead of time.”

Savannah said she especially liked riding in the town’s homecoming parade.

“It was exciting to see all the little kids cheering and waving,” she said. “It brought back memories.”

She felt different when she walked with her father down the middle of the football field Friday night.

“It was very sad,” she said. “I’m a senior, and I don’t want to leave home.”

Savannah’s father, Rodney Gray, admitted to similar feelings.

“I was a little nervous, to be honest,” he said. “I was kind of sad and proud at the same time.”

Even with all the day’s excitement, Savannah said the coronation was not the highlight of her high school career. She was a member of the 2013 state champion Fort Gibson Lady Tigers basketball team. She said she hopes to keep playing basketball, possibly at Oral Roberts University.

“This felt great,” Savannah said about the coronation. “But being state champion will always be number one.”

Reach Cathy Spaulding at (918) 684-2928 or

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