A Show of Love

The Inter-Mountain photos by Eliana McCutcheon A group of girls from the federalist party perform their cheers and skits for the American Legion Auxiliary Wednesday.

ELKINS — The 350 rising high school seniors taking part in the 77th session of the American Legion Auxiliary Rhododendron Girls State participated in a parade Wednesday morning on the campus of Davis & Elkins College.

This annual parade showcases leadership, patriotism and dedication, but more importantly on this day, their appreciation for the American Legion Auxiliary that makes Girls State possible.

“Girls State impacts these girls by showing them love and community, not only for the girls but along with the country,” said Junior Counselor and 2017 Girls State alumni Tylyn Asterino. “It shows us the patriotism and how to be a leader. Not only of tomorrow, but a leader today.

“Here at D&E that is one of our slogans: Making leaders of today, leading the way. I think this is just a perfect organization of showing them how to appreciate our country along with other girls and how to become a better leader and citizen,” she said.

The girls perform their unique cheers and skits which they have been preparing all week to demonstrate their love for the program.

Junior Counselor Tylyn Asterino helps prepare her group of girls for the parade.

This is the second year Davis & Elkins College has hosted Girls State.

Candidates for citizens of Rhododendron Girls State are recommended by their high schools based on their interest in government, leadership, character and honesty, scholarship, cooperativeness, community participation, knowledge of parliamentary procedures and demonstration of above average scholastic achievement.

The session will conclude Friday morning.