June 28, 2021 at 1:40 p.m.

A platform to share dairy’s story

Euerle looks forward to opportunities as finalist
Anna Euerle and her family milk 80 cows on their dairy farm near Litchfield, Minnesota. Euerle is one of 10 finalists for this year’s Princess Kay of the Milky Way.  PHOTO BY JENNIFER COYNE
Anna Euerle and her family milk 80 cows on their dairy farm near Litchfield, Minnesota. Euerle is one of 10 finalists for this year’s Princess Kay of the Milky Way. PHOTO BY JENNIFER COYNE

By Jennifer Coyne- | Comments: 0 | Leave a comment

    LITCHFIELD, Minn. – The Euerle family living room has been the center point of major milestones since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, and the announcement of the 10 Princess Kay of the Milky Way finalists was no exception.
    “We had a watch party in the room, and I was sitting in the rocking chair; the same chair I sat in when I was named a state officer for Minnesota FFA a year ago,” Anna Euerle said. “That chair has seen some pretty big accomplishments.”
    Euerle, the daughter of Vaughn and Joan, was named a finalist for 68th Princess Kay of the Milky Way during a virtual announcement May 16.
    The 19-year-old is taking this opportunity of representing the state’s industry to share the goodness of dairy with a plethora of audiences.
    “I’ve come a long way from being a dairy ambassador in sixth grade,” Euerle said. “As a finalist, this gives me another platform to share our dairy story.”
    Euerle grew up on her family’s 80-cow Holstein and Jersey dairy in Meeker County near Litchfield. She is spending the summer interning at Ru-Be Dairy near Grove City, and leases and owns Milking Shorthorns for the showring with Corstar Farm near Litchfield.
    The Ridgewater College student has taken these farm experiences to expand her knowledge of the dairy industry. At her internship, Euerle is taking care of calves, sorting cows and learning more about dry cow protocols, among other responsibilities.
    “I’m learning a lot about how other people farm, especially those who operate bigger farms than my family’s,” Euerle said. “And too, showing has allowed me to diversify the breeds of cattle I work with.”
    When Euerle is at home, she helps with milking and caring for the calves. This year, she helped with spring tillage, taking the knowledge she gained at school and applying it to her family’s farm.
    It was the mention of that fieldwork when Euerle knew she had been named a Princess Kay finalist.
    “We were all listening to who they were describing and it was all pretty general information,” Euerle said. “Then, they said, ‘This woman more recently started doing fieldwork,’ and I knew.”
    While Euerle realized the script was about her, it was not until her career goals of being a milk inspector or agriculture lender were mentioned that Euerle’s family caught on to the announcement.
    “We were all really excited and shocked. My dad cried,” Euerle said. “My sister, Melissa, was a butterhead and runner up for Princess Kay. I’m excited, but I have some big shoes to fill.”
    Throughout the summer, Euerle has many events to participate in as part of her county dairy princess program. With each one, she is focused on sharing two messages: the nutritional value of dairy foods and the commitment dairy farmers have in producing a safe, healthy product.
    “Dairy farmers are a really special group of people,” Euerle said. “I’m humbled to represent such a hard-working group that puts their heart into everything for their cows.”
    One of the events Euerle is looking forward to most is the county fair later this summer.
    “There will be the two of us princesses, and we’ll spend hours in the malt booth,” Euerle said.
    As part of a Meeker County tradition, the princesses choose a malt flavor to feature at the fair. Euerle will encourage fair-goers to try her frosted lemonade malt.
    “It sounds different, but it’s really good,” she said. “It’s like lemonade with ice cream.”
    The interaction with consumers is invaluable as a dairy princess, Euerle said. In her role as a Princess Kay finalist, she wants to have more conversations with people unfamiliar with dairy farming and share the positive story of the industry.
    “I’m doing this for them, this community,” said Euerle of dairy farmers. “Dairy is such a nutritious option, and I really want to get that point across to everyone I talk to. It’s healthy and easy to enjoy.”
    While the summer is at the forefront of Euerle’s mind, she has also thought about how being a finalist will facilitate growth in a career with the industry.
    “I’d like to be a state milk inspector and foster those positive relationships with farmers,” Euerle said. “For now, I love communicating and telling people how every dairy farm is inspected for quality. That helps people put their trust in us.”
    To honor both the dairy farmers she is representing and all the community members who have and will support her as a finalist, Euerle wants to give back in a unique way. After she has her likeness carved in butter at the Minnesota State Fair, the young woman wants to create a butterhead tour of Litchfield.
    In this tour, she will take her butterhead throughout the community, thanking those who have stood alongside her as she champions for dairy.
    “There’s so much joy in seeing other people excited about dairy advocacy,” Euerle said. “I have a lot of support to share dairy’s story.”


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