Meet the Court: Princess Hailey Savedra

By Sarah Brown
Lebanon Local
Hailey Savedra, 18, is the daughter of Jason and Roxanne Savedra. She has two sisters, Hannah, 15, and Heather, 13. Her family also includes two Chihuahuas, a dachshund-cocker spaniel mix, a beagle and two cats.
Hailey said that Roxanne, who was a Strawberry Princess in 2000, has been one of her biggest role models. She admires the things her mother has done, and how she “puts herself out there,” even if people think it’s a bad idea.
For example, she said, Roxanne initiated the Dr. Seuss Night at Cascade Elementary more than 10 years ago, inviting multiple guests like Strawberry Princesses, football players from Oregon State University and the National Guard to spend evenings reading and giving books to kids.
“People had doubts that she would be able to pull this off and that there would be low attendance,” Hailey said.
Before COVID-19, Dr. Seuss Night at the school hit an attendance of about 400 people, Roxanne said.
Hailey admires that kind of initiation and perseverance, and hopes to have that same mentality, herself. In fact, she already took charge by helping coordinate the high school’s special education prom these past three years, despite being told there was no budget for it.
One of Hailey’s favorite vacation memories was when her family went on a road trip to the Grand Canyon. Not only was it a “really pretty” sight to behold, but they also made fun stops along the way.
She loves road trips, particularly the ones when her and her sisters would crowd into the back seat, maybe argue about who had to sit in the middle, and cover the windows with their pillows. And when the car would make a turn, the girls would lean into it and squish the person on that side of the seat.
She appreciates those road trips and other opportunities she’s had with her family, and hopes to be provide fun experiences for her own kids someday.
Currently Hailey is completing a certified nursing program at Linn-Benton Community College while also finishing her senior year in high school. After she graduates in June, she plans to work as a CNA while continuing at LBCC to take her pre-requisites. During that time, she said, she will make the decision on whether to pursue physical therapy or construction engineer management.
Hailey has been part of competitive cheerleading teams since the seventh grade and served in the Leadership Class for four years. More recently she’s taken up watercolor, an activity she finds “super relaxing.”
“The colors just flow together,” she said, “and it puts you in a good state of mind.”
In her downtime, Hailey enjoys walking her dog, Holly, and being outside.
“I love the sunshine, even though I burn,” she said.
It seems she’s not afraid to do things she enjoys even if it poses a risk (like walking in the sun). One of her bucket list items includes skydiving, despite the fact that she’s terrified of heights. She also wants to buy a manual transmission Mustang and see all 50 states, (she already has seven or eight “under her belt”).
Hailey said she kind of likes to live by the adage, “You grow through what you go through.” To her, it’s a reminder that everything a person does is a learning experience. She applies the saying to Lebanon, too. The city isn’t what it used to be, but it is growing in character through its townspeople, she said, while retaining some of its original charm.
As such, keeping a tradition like the Strawberry Festival is important for Lebanon, she said, because it keeps expectations while also building aspirations. Hailey has aspired to be on the Strawberry Court since its princesses visited her elementary school some years back. It was the best day of her life.
“I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, what are these? I want to be one!’” she said.
And so, growing up, Hailey always took into consideration the decisions she needed to make to attain her goal of being a princess.
“The princesses, I think, keep people positive, and I think it’s a great honor to be on the court,” she said.
When Hailey was younger, she would decorate her bike and ride in the junior parade. It’s the parades and floats that have always been her favorite part of the festival. She recognizes the hours and pride people put into their construction, and she discovers new things and enjoys watching kids get excited about candy giveaways.
“The parades are just big fun,” she said.
But she also appreciates that most people in Lebanon are willing to help make events, big and small (like the special education prom), a reality.
“Stuff couldn’t come together if we didn’t all come together,” Hailey said. “Everybody needs each other, so we all need to be there for each other, and I feel like Lebanon definitely has that environment.”