Liberty Tucker has been looking forward to be a Daffodil Princess all her life.
“Liberty has been a complete fan of the whole Daffodil Festival — the parade, the fair, everything — since she was a toddler,” said her mother Tonia. “The first time we took her to the parade, when she was about 2 or 3, she was infatuated with the yellow princesses and wanted to be one.”
That dream has nearly come to fruition. Tucker was named White River High School’s 2021 representative on the royal court in January, but until she’s officially tapped at the Princess Promenade (which will hopefully be held at the end of March), she’s considered a princess candidate.
“I wanted to be a Daffodil Princess because of the impact they have on their community, and all the amazing opportunities and events you get to partake in,” Tucker said in a recent interview. “Why wouldn’t you want to be a Daffodil Princess? It’s a great opportunity, and they get to have a lot of fun.”
Being a princess, she continued, means embedding “positivity and kindness and compassion” into her community, and showing people of every age that “we can make our community a better place.”
Since all princess are seniors in high school, Tucker very nearly missed her chance at being a princess due to COVID-19; the 2020 court was selected as usual in the fall of 2020, but the pandemic derailed nearly everything after, including the crowning of a 2020 Daffodil Queen and the parade that follows.
“We weren’t sure we were going to have a court this year or not, and then we had a lot of schools reaching out to us saying they still had girls that wanted to go out for Daffodil Princess,” said Demetria Zuniga, co-director of royalty with the Daffodil Festival. “So we said, ‘OK — it’s going to be a unique year!’”
No one is quite sure how the rest of the year is going to pan out, event-wise — the traditional reading events with princesses at local libraries may have to go virtual, and the parade (normally held at the end of April) may have to be put off until coronavirus cases continue to decline.
“It all just kind of depends on how everything starts to look in the next few months,” Tucker said, noting that princess training began just last weekend.
Outside her role as local royalty, Tucker is on track to graduate White River with a 4.0.
“After, I’m looking to go into biology as my major, and after I graduate with a bachelors in biology, go into medical school and become a pediatrician,” she said. “Since I was a young girl, first grade, I’ve always known I’ve wanted to help kids. I love learning, so being able to constantly being able to learn the rest of my life really excites me. The first thing that came to my mind was becoming a doctor, because it combines those two things perfectly.”
In particular, Tucker wants to specialize in endocrinology, since she was recently diagnosed with type I diabetes.