Pair of area young ladies vying for 2019 Allamakee County Dairy Princess crown at Saturday's banquet

Kaylee Gibbs and Faith Palmer ...

The 2019 Allamakee County Dairy Banquet will be held this Saturday, March 16 at the Allamakee County Fairgrounds Pavilion in Waukon. The meal will be served from 7-8:30 p.m. with the program starting at 8 p.m.

The annual celebration recognizes the importance of the dairy industry in Allamakee County and the contributions dairy families make to this important industry. Every year, top producers from the county are recognized at the banquet. In addition, several other awards are presented that evening, some of which include the following:

• Outstanding Young Dairy Family Award
• Pioneer Dairyman Award
• Distinguished Dairy Family Award
• Service to Dairy Industry Award
• Golden Butter Knife Award.

Also a highlight of the evening's festivities, the 2019 Allamakee County Dairy Princess will be crowned. Two Allamakee County young ladies - Kaylee Gibbs and Faith Palmer - are vying for this year’s Dairy Princess crown. Photos and biographies of the candidates follow:

Kaylee Gibbs -
Kaylee Gibbs is the 16-year-old daughter of Chris and Kerri Gibbs of Waterville and a junior at Waukon High School. Kaylee grew up on her family dairy farm, where they milk 400 Holsteins in a double 16 parlor. Her duties include milking, calf chores,  fresh cow health and field work.

Kaylee is actively involved in 4-H, where she has held multiple officer positions as well as being a member of County Council. She also enjoys participating in her local FFA chapter, holding the position of Historian. Kaylee is also involved with her church youth group helping with their church suppers and summer activities with kids. This last summer she traveled to Imperial, PA on her church mission trip offering her help to people in need.

Through 4-H and FFA, Kaylee has been involved in dairy judging. She was a member of the FFA state champion Dairy Cattle Evaluation team and also recently received the state title of Dairy Production Placement Proficiency Award.

In her free time, Kaylee enjoys being with friends and family and working on her fair projects throughout the year. She plans on attending a four-year school to major in dairy science and minor in genetics or animal nutrition.

Faith Palmer -
Faith Palmer is the 17-year-old daughter of John and Meghan Palmer of Waukon, and she is a junior at Waukon High School. Her family has a 120-cow dairy herd consisting mostly of Holsteins in an operation that has been certified organic since 2006. They sell their milk to Organic Valley.

Faith has been an eager helper on the farm since she was very little. Today, she milks every morning before school, and just doesn’t think she could start her day right if she didn’t. When not involved in school activities, she also enjoys milking at night. Faith also has taken an interest in herd health and reproduction, and plans to learn how to artificially inseminate (AI) cattle this summer. She loves to do field work as well, especially mowing hay and clipping pasture.

Faith also keeps busy in school. She is a member of the Little Switzerland FFA Chapter at Waukon High School, and has held the offices of Secretary and Vice President. She is also a member of the concert and chamber choirs, and is on the JV and varsity rosters. She was also recently inducted into the National Honor Society.

Through FFA Faith has received many awards. Most recently she was awarded the champion state proficiency in Organic Agriculture, an entrepreneurial project focused on her work with her own registered dairy animals. She was also a member of the state champion FFA Dairy Evaluation team this past fall.

Outside of school, she loves to show cattle, and enjoys sharing that passion with her younger siblings and younger 4-H members. She is currently the President of the Ludlow Future Farmers 4-H club and is on the 4-H County Council and Dairy Judging Team. In the past few years she has gotten involved with the Junior Holstein Association, and has earned the opportunity to compete in the Quiz Bowl competition at the National Holstein Convention the past two years. This past summer she was crowned Allamakee County Fair Princess.

In any spare time she gets, Faith enjoys playing basketball and the piano. After she graduates from high school, she plans to attend Iowa State University and study dairy science and business. Eventually, she hopes to someday return to the family farm.

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