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Dairy princess pageant to return

The Pennsylvania Dairy Princess Pageant will be held at the Blair County Convention Center for the second consecutive year and will culminate with the crowning of the new princess on Saturday, Sept. 25.

“We are thrilled to have the dairy princesses back for another year. The group was thrilled with their experience last year, and we are confident that this year will be even better,” said Tara Saltzburg, convention center spokeswoman.

The four-day event will take place inside the facility, Saltzburg said.

“I believe this is the beginning of a great relationship with Pa. Dairy, and I’m hopeful that they will find a permanent home here at the BCCC,” she added.

The event, marking its 65th year, is usually held in Harrisburg.

“This event normally concludes the All-American Dairy Show held in Harrisburg. However, All-American Dairy Show adjusted its schedule for the past few years. This has allowed us to explore other options for our state dairy princess pageant,” said Laura Daubert, administrative director for Pennsylvania Dairy Princess & Promotion Services Inc.

Holding the event at the convention center is beneficial to Blair County.

“This event, and others like it, will draw hundreds of guests from across Pennsylvania and the region to fill our hotels, visit our attractions, explore our history and frequent our restaurants,” Saltzburg said.

In this year’s event, 23 county princesses and 16 alternates from across the state will participate.

“It fluctuates from year to year depending on how many counties have local county princesses,” Daubert said.

Although requirements have broadened, dairy princesses today are chosen according to qualifications similar to those used for the very first pageant in 1956.

Prospective princesses must come from a dairy farm or dairy-related background, be employed or have family members employed in the dairy industry or own dairy animals. Prospective participants without dairy background may qualify for dairy princess by serving as a junior dairy promoter for at least one year.

The event is packed with activity for the participants.

“Over several days, the princesses will be individually interviewed and participate in other informal meetings with the judges. They will each present dairy presentations, make speeches and scrapbooks, test their dairy promotion knowledge and submit three dairy recipes,” Saltzburg said.

At the Sept. 25 event, the state dairy princess and two alternates will be selected.

“Each princess and their team of county promoters communicate to the public the importance of the dairy industry, milk and its products to the economic well-being of our state’s economy and remind consumers to choose Pennsylvania Dairy,” Daubert said. “These three individuals also will continue to serve their county at the grassroots level until May 31, 2022.”

Daubert said holding the event at the convention center is working out well for her organization.

“It has been a pleasure to work with the team at Blair County Convention Center. The staff have been wonderful as we organized and planned for the event. We are excited to partner with them again this year. A benefit of the convention center hosting our pageant is it is centrally located in the state for our princesses and guests,” Daubert said.

Mirror Staff Writer Walt Frank is at 814-946-7467.

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