When Marjorie Judith Vincent walked into Children's Hospital yesterday afternoon, she was greeted with momentary silence and then a shaky rendition of "Happy Birthday." "Are you really Miss America?" piped up one youngster. "Where's your crown?" The crown, left in the limousine downstairs, was quickly retrieved so Vincent could get on with the whirlwind business of being Miss America. Yesterday's itinerary included a promotional appearance in Baltimore and then a visit to the hospital, where she was surprised with a cake and balloons for her 26th birthday. Each child at the party received an autographed picture, cake and -- best of all -- a chance to try on the crown itself.

Miss America serves as spokeswoman for the Children's Miracle Network Telethon, a national program that raises money for pediatric hospitals across the country, including Children's Hospital. After a quick round of hugs, the Duke University law student was whisked off to catch yet another plane -- this time for New York, where she will appear in Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade today. After the parade, it's off to Chicago, where Vincent will turn the tables and surprise her parents with a visit home for some of Mom's leftovers.

Out and About

For all those people who paid the handsome price of $3,500 for the privilege of meeting and being photographed with Princess Diana at the controversial fund-raiser last month for the London Ballet, Washington Ballet and Grandma's House for AIDS babies, it wasn't quite enough. They will have to pay for the photographs. This was the party with two tents in the Departmental Auditorium, where those paying a paltry $2,500 only got to gaze at Diana. A photograph is usually part of the package, but this time those who want a photograph of their historic meeting with the Princess of Wales are being charged an additional $25 for an 8-by-10, or $20 for each 5-by-7 ...

Even a former president has a rough time selling a home in the current real estate market. Richard Nixon put his Saddle River, N.J., home on the market earlier this year at a price of $3.25 million, which was later reduced to $2.9 million. Last week the property was sold to a Japanese businessman for $2.4 million. The Nixons bought the seven-bedroom home for $1.25 million in 1981 and made about $300,000 in improvements. The former president and his wife, Pat, are moving to a three-bedroom condominium in Park Ridge, about a mile from the Saddle River home. Nixon's real estate broker would not identify the buyer and said she didn't know whether the home had been purchased as a residence or an investment ...

There's a new honor for Dan Quayle. He is to become the first vice president inducted into Little League's Hall of Excellence. It seems that the future vice president was the youngest player, at only 8, on a 1955 Indiana Little League team sponsored by the Huntington (Ind.) Herald-Press, which is owned by his family. There are no records of his hitting or fielding skills, but the Little League has decided to honor Quayle as a "role model for children" with a "commitment to excellence." Quayle will be inducted into the Hall of Excellence in ceremonies in his office at the Old Executive Office Building. And slugger Quayle will donate his old glove to the Little League Museum in Williamsport, Pa. As an aside, Little League officials point out that no president has ever played Little League, though President Bush coached a team ...