CRAWFORD COUNTY - It was a beautiful night for a party, when Crawford County dairy farmers, joined their friends and families gathered for the annual banquet in Eastman last week.
The delicious meal served at the Eastman United Methodist Fellowship Hall featured plenty of dairy products from the cheese tray introduction, to the unlimited supply of milk and chocolate milk, right up to the very popular ice cream dessert options.
However, there were plenty of treats in the room in addition to the desserts. The 2022-23 Crawford Dairy Princess Aisja Achenbach started the banquet with a warm welcome to all who attended.
Aisja was joined by 2022 Little Miss Squirt Erin Nolan in giving reports of the year’s activities, and there were plenty of appearances for the local dairy ambassadors at banks, schools parades, stores and much more.
However, the night rightly belonged to the 2023-24 Crawford County Dairy Royalty and the outgoing Royalty made sure they felt welcome in their new roles.
During her speech, the 2023-24 Little Miss Squirt Ivey Achenbach, the daughter of Darci and Adam Achenbach, informed the crowd that she was being sponsored by her grandparents Steve and Terri.
Ivey attends Prairie Catholic School. She enjoys being on the farm and taking care of cows. As for her new position representing Crawford County Dairy, the 2023-24 Little Miss Squirt had no problems telling the assembled crowd her ambitions.
“I want to do something that’s interesting and important,” Ivey said.
The 2023 Dairy Princess Ellaree Young was no less enthusiastic than Ivey, when she introduced herself with a brief speech at the banquet.
Ellaree is the daughter of Harry and JoEllen Young of Soldiers Grove. She is a sophomore at Kickapoo High School and serves as the secretary of the Kickapoo High School FFA.
Ellaree told the crowd that while she currently lives on a beef farm, her past, present and future are deeply tied to the dairy industry.
Wedeberg Farm is the sponsor of 2023-24 Crawford County Dairy Princess Ellaree Young.
Ellaree said that growing up, her family had rented a dairy farm, and been involved in raising 40 dairy bulls. Both her dad and grandpa have been involved in the dairy industry on many different levels.
Ellaree hopes to become a cattle feed nutritionist and make her contribution to improving agriculture.
“I love cows,” the dairy princess said. “My life revolves around cows. I love being around cattle.
“We all owe a lot to our farmers and what they do,” Ellaree explained. “I want to contribute by being a cattle nutritionist.”
In particular, Ellaree wants to be a dairy nutritionist. That may be, but on her way to becoming a nutritionist, she has become the 2023-24 Crawford County Dairy Princess–and it’s pretty clear she’ll do a great job at that.
While the crowning of the Crawford County Dairy Royalty may have been a highlight of the banquet, a few other things happened.
Ed Steger, a longtime supporter of the dairy industry and big part of dairy breakfasts over the years, was named the Honorary Dairy Month Chairperson.
This year’s dairy breakfast hosts the Flansburgh Family was introduced and Gail Klinkner of Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin updated everyone on the promotional efforts of that group.June is Dairy Month! Buy some cheese!