Queen Azalea LVII, Dari Alexander's, Thursday began with a morning sail up the Cape Fear River to her coronation ceremony downtown. There, she was greeted by celebrities and Wilmington residents, waiting to get a glimpse of the Queen and share a little Southern hospitality.
"It was great getting off the boat and see all those people cheering," said Dari Alexander. "This crown; I love it."
At the coronation ceremony, she donned her tiara, for what was a whirlwind day. We rode along with the Queen in her limo to her first official stop as Queen of the Azaleas, the Senior Center.
There, the Fox News Channel anchor and guests were treated to a spirited performance by the Golden Poms Cheerleaders, as well as singers and tapdancers.
"I tell you, I have always been a sucker for tap dancers," said celebrity guest Barry Corbin of the WB series One Tree Hill.
The Queen and the crowd just couldn't get enough. "It was one of the better shows," said Manny Chiachiaro, whose friends were performing at the Senior Center. "It was great."
Evelyn Thomas agreed. "This is always the highlite, I think, of the Azalea Festival."
Queen Dari says she has never worn a tiara, but this is something she definitely could get used to. "I feel empowered by the tiara," joked Alexander. "I may just start ordering people around. I feel very important, thanks to the good people of Wilmington. I may just vacuum in it."
The stop at the Senior Center is really just the beginning for Queen Dari. She will visit many more spots in Wilmington before the festival wraps up this weekend.