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Dairy Princesses return for 50th Mower County banquet

ADAMS, Minn. -- More than 35 former Mower County Dairy Princesses got together last month for their 50th annual banquet.

The first banquet was held in 1954 and was started by B.J. Huseby. In the first years, the Mower County Farm Bureau managed the banquet. In 1960 the Mower County American Dairy Association took over the contest and other counties in the state modeled their contest after the one in Mower County.

Over the years, Mower County has had six regional princess winners. They were Eleanor Maley, Ruth Marie Peterson, Marlys Dammen, Betty Jax, Karmen Larson, and Julie Weness. Eleanor, Ruth Marie and Betty all became Princess Kay of the Milky Way and Ruth Marie became the First American Dairy Princess.

The banquets have always been held at Sacred Heart Auditorium. This year 420 people were served.

The largest attendance at any banquet was in 1963 when 614 were served. Many banquets that followed served 500 people, but in recent years there have been approximately 300-400 people in attendance.

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The 50th Mower County Dairy Princess Banquet was held on April 12 at the Sacred Heart Auditorium.

Heather Hill, daughter of Duane Hill and Jeanne Blaser, was crowned the 2003 Mower County Dairy Princess. Nicole Jax, daughter of Doug and Becky Jax; Faith Miller, daughter of Lynn and Sherilyn Miller; and McKinzie Smith, daughter of Rick and Tracy Smith, were selected 2003 Milk Maids.

Other 2003 Dairy Princesses include Hannah Miller, daughter of Lynn and Sherilyn Miller and Angela Russell, daughter of Randy and Valerie Smith.

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