ST. JOSEPH – This year’s finalists for the title of Princess Kay of the Milky Way have been named.

The 12 young women from dairy farm backgrounds were selected at the conclusion of a three-day event for county dairy princesses held in St. Joseph.

Each of the 12 will be sculpted in butter during the 2011 Minnesota State Fair.  Princess Kay is crowned each year the night before the State Fair opens.

For the first time in the contest’s 58-year history, two sisters are among the finalists.  April Johnson, 21, and Chelsey Johnson, 19, both from Heron Lake and representing Cottonwood County, are the daughters of Dean and Elizabeth Johnson.

The finalists also include:

  • Erin Daninger, 19, Forest Lake, representing Washington County, daughter of Pat and Sharlene Daninger;
  • Chaneen Haler, 18, Norwood, representing Carver County, daughter of Rick Haler and Connie Helget;
  • Jennifer Janak, 19, Northfield, representing Dakota County, daughter of Roger and Julie Janak;
  • Stephanie Kasper, 19, Owatonna, representing Steele County, daughter of Peter and Karen Kasper;
  • Emily Krekelberg, 20, Le Sueur, representing Le Sueur County, daughter of Patty Krekelberg and Dale Krekelberg.
  • Emma Motl, 19, Browerville, representing Todd County, daughter of Mike Motl and Kim Harff;
  • Janet Oelfke, 19, Hamburg, representing Sibley County, daughter of Jim and Jody Oelfke;
  • Kelsey Sellner, 19, Sleepy Eye, representing Brown County, daughter of Mike and Judy Sellner;
  • Theresa Twohey, 20, Stewartville, representing Olmsted County, daughter of Edward and Sherri Twohey; and
  • Mary Zahurones, 17, Pierz, representing Morrison County, daughter of Chuck and Pat Tax.

Princess Kay serves as the official goodwill ambassador for the state’s dairy farmers, and makes appearances to help explain their commitment to taking care of the animals and resources while providing wholesome, nutritious and affordable dairy products.

Midwest Dairy Association manages the program.

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