2011 Princess Kay of the Milky Way Recap

The Other Mike and I had a chance to check out the Princess Kay of the Milky Way pageant last night. After playing a video where each of the 12 contestants contributed a Midwest Dairy fact, the Princess Kay Orchestra kicked things off:

Princess Kay Orchestra

The Master of Ceremony, Rod Johnson, was excellent as usual. Here he is introducing last year’s princess, Katie Miron. Katie’s role during the night is to give a speech on what her year as Princess Kay was like, while providing some advice to the next Princess Kay (typical advice: “enjoy every minute of it, because it goes so fast!”).

Rod Johnson with Katie Miron

There was a special appearance this year from the official butter head carver, Linda Christensen:

Butter Head Carver, Linda Christensen

Linda, an MCAD graduate, has been carving the 90 pound Princess Kay butter heads for over 30 years. TPT has done a profile of Linda, which was also shown last night:

Just moments before the crown was lowered onto the 2011 Princess Kay of the Milky Way’s head:

Crowning of the 2011 Princess Kay of the Milky Way - Mary Zahurones

Mary Zahurones of Pierz, MN (representing Morrison County) took the title. She was a cross country runner in high school, and is starting a pre-med program at the U of MN this fall.

On the way out, The Other Mike picked up a copy of the Dairy Star – a 12 page race program.

Dairy Star

Clearly, if we had the race program ahead of time, we may have had a better luck with our picks.

A few differences this year:

– The parents of the contestants are the first thing mentioned when the contestants are introduced. Lots of credit goes to the daughter’s parents. But, this year, they didn’t mention the last names of parents. Perhaps that’s because one of the contestants – the winning one, in fact – doesn’t share her parents’ last name. As in, her parents divorced when she was young, and her mother remarried a dairy farmer.

– McDonald’s restaurants got a lot of plugs. Apparently, the dairy industry is fired up about the popularity of milk infused coffee drinks at the fast food king.

– The question “What are you going to do with your butter head?” got less play this year during the Q&A. Perhaps that’s because last year a contestant said that her mom would use it to make buns, and, and her dad says, “nobody beats my mom’s buns!” That question may need a cooling off period.

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