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Queen contestant raises $7,857 for nursing home

Jordan Walton and Chelsey Holmes

Urbanna Oyster Festival Queen contestant Jordan Walton, a senior at Middlesex High School, has volunteered at Riverside Convalescent Center in Saluda and raised money for the beautification of the center as well as other activities she has done with the residents.

Walton chose to do her project in honor of her “Nanny,” Mildred “Lee” Ward, who was a resident at the convalescent center for five years. When Walton used to visit her “Nanny” she saw how much her face “lit up” as well as the faces of the other residents. She says that is what truly inspired her.

When Walton began her project, she had big plans for the beautification of the convalescent center and a few activities planned to do with the residents. Her goal was to raise $6,000, which would go toward fixing up the back yard, rebuilding the gazebo, and cleaning and decorating the back porch. However, as she started going in and out of the center, Walton realized how much more it would mean to the residents if she just spent time with them. “Making the residents smile means more to me than giving them nice things to look at,” she said. 

The first step of Walton’s project was meeting with the activity directors Valerie and Heather at the convalescent center. Walton told them what she wanted to do, and together they made a calendar of all the activities for the residents. The activities Walton planned were: movie night, making “fits,” spa day, painting window ornaments, decorating cookies, and a prom.

When Walton was not spending time with the residents, she and her Little Miss Spat contestant were working to raise money. They held three major events— a pool party, a community fair (held at Riverside Convalescent Center and involved the residents), and a spaghetti dinner. “Each event was a huge success thanks to my community,” said Walton.

She met her goal by raising a total of $7,857.39, which includes donations.

Walton and her Little Miss Spat ended up beautifying the back yard, rebuilding the gazebo, cleaning and furnishing the back porch of the convalescent center, and donating $463 for future activities with the residents. 

“I never dreamed that I could make such an impact on my community and the Riverside Convalescent Center,” she said. “I encourage people to stop by and volunteer or just visit the residents. It really does brighten their day as well as yours.”

During her high school career, Walton has been a member of the Nursing Assistance Program, Distributive Education Clubs of America (DECA), Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) and Student Government Association (SGA). She is currently the secretary of her senior class and, as a junior, was selected to be on the 2011 MHS Homecoming Court. She also has been a member of the varsity volleyball team and is currently serving as captain.

Outside of school, Walton volunteers coaching the kickboarders and swims for the Urbanna Swim Team. Also, she swam for South Eastern Virginia Aquatics and currently plays for the Peninsula Juniors Volleyball Club. 

This past summer Walton was employed at the Urbanna Pool and Cross Street Coffee in Urbanna. She is a member of Urbanna United Methodist Church.

After graduation, Walton plans to attend James Madison University to pursue a degree in the medical field.

She is the daughter of Brian and Angela Walton of Urbanna. She is the granddaughter of Tony and Peggy Walton of Urbanna, and Garland and Diane Harrow of Deltaville. She has two younger siblings, Hailey and Laura.

Her Little Miss Spat, Chelsey Holmes, is a first-grader at Middlesex Elementary School. Chelsey is the daughter of Lynnette and Charles Holmes of Urbanna. Chelsey enjoys playing sports, reading, and playing with her sisters. When she grows up, she would like to be a doctor. She has two siblings, Lindsey and Cierra.

posted 10.10.2012

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