March 23, 2024

The 50th Annual Neptune Festival Crowns Akhil Jain King Neptune 50!
King, Tritons, and full Royal Court Announced

Akhil Jain Headshot

Akhil Jain, King Neptune 50


The 50th Annual Neptune Festival is delighted to have crowned its 50th King Neptune, Akhil Jain. King Neptune serves as the figurehead leader of the annual Neptune Festival season of events. The King is chosen by the Neptune Festival committee from nominations solicited from the general public. The selection process weighs criteria such as demonstrated involvement and contribution to the quality of life in Virginia Beach and active participation in the activities of community life. Once chosen, the King and the rest of the Court become ambassadors for the Neptune Festival throughout the year.

“We are so pleased to have Akhil Jain as our 50th King Neptune,” said Christopher “Kit” Chope, President and CEO of the Neptune Festival. “Akhil has poured himself into our community in so many ways. He is the ideal ambassador for the Neptune Festival’s mission to Celebrate the Beach Life—especially during our momentous 50th anniversary year.”

As President of the independent hotel management company Landmark Hotel Group, Akhil Jain leads a team which operates and develops some of the industry’s finest brands, including Marriott, Hilton, Hyatt, InterContinental, Radisson and Choice Hotels. With corporate headquarters in Virginia Beach, Landmark’s portfolio includes twelve hotels in Hampton Roads and the Outer Banks.

The newly crowned King Neptune is deeply involved in giving back to the community. Mr. Jain serves as a director on the boards of various organizations including TowneBank, the United Way of South Hampton Roads, the Neptune Festival, and the Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters Health System where he serves as Chairman. He also serves as a member of the Hampton Roads Community Leadership Partners, Virginia Beach Vision, and the Norfolk Forum Board. Akhil Jain and his wife Nita live in Virginia Beach with their two children.

The King also reigns over a Royal Court, which is selected by committee based upon their contributions to community life.

Tritons are community leaders selected by nomination. They possess an understanding of the spirit of the Neptune Festival and with their partners are ambassadors for the Neptune Festival throughout the year.

  • Jim Bibbs | LifeNet Health
  • Will Driscoll | Virginia Sports Hall of Fame
  • Mark Horton | Towne Insurance
  • Yiorgos Koliopoulos | Williams Mullen
  • Matt Liebler | Princess Anne Country Club
  • Alex Mitchum | C&M Industries
  • Joashua Schulman | Town Center Office Suites, Virginia Beach City Council
  • Katherine Willis | Cerity Partners

Princesses and Princes have demonstrated active participation in school, community and/or civic organizations and endeavors.
2024 Prince and Princesses represent Bayside High School, Cape Henry Collegiate, Catholic High School, Cox High School, First Colonial High School, Floyd E. Kellam High School, Kempsville High School, Ocean Lakes High School, and Princess Anne High School.

  • Imari DeLena Ralston Bond
  • Rylee Madison Brooks-Booth
  • Hathaway Belle Carr
  • Gabrielle Ann DeStefano
  • Olivia Bradley Foster
  • Berkley Elizabeth Houston
  • Avery Renee Hunn
  • Urvi Rani Jain
  • Andrew Michael Jakubowski
  • Maya Grace Katherman
  • Piper Claire Richardson
  • Paige Marie Rooney
  • Torrence Madison Spreder


About Virginia Beach Neptune Festival
Founded in 1974, Virginia Beach Neptune Festival is a private, non-profit 501-C3 organization, producing over 40 events per year, which generate tens of millions of dollars in the local economy and contribute to the charitable, educational, and recreational development of Hampton Roads. The total economic impact to the area of its flagship event alone, the Neptune Festival Boardwalk Weekend, was $26.1M in 2023. The annual weekend event is ranked among the Top 100 Events in North America and within the Top 20 Events in the Southeastern US by recognized tourism industry organizations. Neptune’s Sand Sculpting Championship is considered one of the best competitions of its kind in the world. The 2024 Boardwalk Weekend is scheduled for September 27th through September 29th this year. For more information, call the Festival office at 757.498.0215 or visit