CRAIG COUNTY – Craig County has produced another celebrity, and this one started out as Craig County’s “Miss Spring Thang” of 2010.
Zack Bacon, a 2006 graduate of Craig County High School, is featured in Appalachian Power Company’s full-page ad in a series running in West Virginia newspapers. Bacon is APCO’s Energy Efficiency Coordinator for West Virginia, and works in the company’s Charleston, W. Va., office.
The full-page ad is titled “Building a Powerful Future” and shows Bacon in an attic, measuring the depth of the insulation. The message from the ad is that “conserving energy is good for the environment and saves money.”
Bacon’s first claim to fame was as the winner of the womanless beauty pageant, Miss Spring Thang, which he won in 2010. The spring beauty pageant was held in New Castle to raise funds for the high school’s After Prom Party. The competition of young men made up to look like “gorgeous women” featured eight of Craig County’s finest young men. After some hilarious antics, Bacon was announced as the winner.
He has been involved in a wide variety of activities since his high school days here in the county. Even during his school days, he worked on a local farm, putting up hay, caring for beef cattle, milking dairy cows, cleaning out stables, and operating farm equipment.
During the fall of 2009, he and other Virginia Tech architecture and urban studies students traveled to Mississippi as part of a program to design and build a house to replace one destroyed by Hurricane Katrina.
Bacon then spent June 2010 in Spain, part of a team from Virginia Tech that participated in the Solar Decathlon Europe.
Tech’s entry, the Lumenhaus, was an innovative, solar-powered house designed, constructed, and operated by Tech students and faculty. While in Madrid, the team set up the house for the competition and conducted public tours of it. The Lumenhaus was the overall winner of the competition. Bacon said he enjoyed his trip to Spain, but said, “It definitely made me appreciate my life here in the United States and in Craig County.”
After graduating from VT in 2011 with a degree in architecture, Bacon worked for companies in Roanoke and Christiansburg before accepting his present position with APCO in fall 2013. His responsibilities include advising customers as to how they can increase the energy efficiency of their buildings. Thus, he was a perfect “model” for APCO’s ad.
In addition to the new job and re-locating to West Virginia, there was another big change in his life. He married his long-time girlfriend, Caroline, in December 2013. Caroline is originally from Northern Virginia and also graduated from VT.
The couple lives right in Charleston, with their two Brittany spaniels, Luna and Jackson. Their plans are to someday move back to Craig County, where they can enjoy the farm life they both love.
– By Ann G. Harrell