On the Road with Princess Kay

Reading with a big thank you

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As February is the month of love, it has given me the opportunity to reflect on what I love about my position this year. 

Of course, there are all of the incredible dairy farmers who inspire me every day to represent them the best that I can. This month, I have met so many amazing students and teachers not to mention the love I have for all of the cows that make our job as dairy farmers worth it.

I started February at the St. Paul Winter Carnival Vulcan Victory Torchlight Parade. I was joined by my state fair friends, Fairborne and Fairchild, as we walked through the unusually warm parade. However, it was not quite warm enough this time to wear a dress through the parade, like I did for the St. Paul Winter Carnival King Boreas Grande Day Parade. I still had a wonderful time meeting princesses from all over the state and even princesses from Wisconsin.

The remainder of the month was filled with classroom visits and book readings. 

February was “I Love to Read Month,” so I was invited to be a guest reader at several schools this month.

I started at Bluff View Elementary in Lake City, Minnesota. I met with all of their students from kindergarten through fifth grade. We read dairy-themed books and also talked about dairy farming and my role as Princess Kay. 

I was also honored to be the reward for the Bluff View star students also. We ate lunch together and played a few agriculture-themed games. It was definitely one of the highlights of my year so far. I also saw what one of the kindergarten teachers is doing to teach about agriculture in her classroom. Not only does she have a farm toy set in her room, where students can play with tractors, grain bins, barns and cows, she also organized an agriculture parade with farm animal balloons and tractors. I know that these efforts will have an incredible impact on her students’ understanding of agriculture.

The next week, I visited Lincoln Elementary in Faribault, Minnesota. I was visited a kindergarten class, and I was the mystery reader for some of the third, fourth and fifth grade classes. I read a book about dairy products with the kindergartners, and we made thank you cards for dairy farmers. I love doing this activity because it shows me what they learned. There were a few cards that showed it raining because we talked about how dairy farmers need to take care of the cows even when it’s raining or snowing.

My final appearance for the month brought me to 50 classrooms via a Zoom book reading coordinated by Minnesota Agriculture in the Classroom. I was a celebrity reader sharing “Tales of the Dairy Godmother: Chuck’s Ice Cream Wish” followed by lots of insightful questions from the students.

As I said earlier, I have had the students make thank you cards for dairy farmers. I have been sharing these on social media for “Thank a Dairy Farmer Thursdays,” but I would also like to share some here. 

It has become one of my favorite parts of the visits because the students put so much care and thought into their cards. It is important that all of you get to see how much the students care about the work that you do. Here is what a few of the students at Zion Lutheran School wrote. 

Charlie wrote, “Thank you for making food for us. I love you.” Another student wrote, “Thank you for all of your work. Thank you for the milk. Thank you for all the things that you do for us.” Olivia showed us that we don’t have to write a long thank you for it to be impactful. She said, “Thank you for all you do.” Taylor wrote, “Dear dairy farmers, thank you so much for making ice cream, milk, cheese and sour cream. Thank you so much for all of your hard work.”

I hope that these notes brighten your day like they do mine, and I want you all to know how much our students in Minnesota care about the work you do for all of us.

Princess Kay of the Milky Way, Emma Kuball, serves as the Minnesota dairy community’s goodwill ambassador. Kuball grew up in Waterville, Minnesota, working on her family’s sixth-generation dairy farm. She attends the University of Wisconsin-River Falls, studying agriculture education, and looks forward to becoming an FFA advisor. She enjoys reading, crocheting and baking. Her parents are Nate and Shannon Kuball.

Princess Kay is active doing school visits, representing dairy farmers and sharing the importance of dairy farming and dairy foods at appearances across Minnesota.

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