Three, young Plateau-area women will vie for the King-Pierce County Dairy Ambassador crown.
Cherise Lanting, Michelle Maris and Hillary Mower will be presented at the 54th King-Pierce County Dairy Ambassador Banquet and Coronation at 7 tonight, Wednesday, at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Hall in Enumclaw.
One will replace Elizabeth Birklid, a fourth-generation dairy farmer from Enumclaw and second-generation dairy princess, who will now run for the state Dairy Ambassador position in June.
At one time, each of the girls running for the position can remember wanting to be crowned “dairy princess.” Now in the running and gathered for the April 8 King-Pierce County Dairy Women “Princess Tea” at Darleen DeGroot’s Enumclaw home, they said they were excited about the prospect of being chosen to spread the news about the dairy industry in Washington state. The Dairy Ambassador will bring her message through appearances at schools, workshops, the Enumclaw Fair, the Pierce County Fair, the fair in Puyallup and during June, which is Dairy Month, she will welcome the “dairy baby,” the first baby born in June at Enumclaw Regional Hospital, and make appearances at local banks and the senior centers.
Dairy Ambassadors must have a connection to the industry and possess knowledge of it and meet other identified criteria.
Lanting, 17, is a junior at Enumclaw High School, and plays an active role on her family’s Enumclaw dairy farm, which is currently run by her parents, Mike and Yolanda Lanting.
Maris, 17, is the daughter of Dale Maris of Buckley and Kathy Maris of Bonney Lake. Her father is a retired dairy farmer. She is a senior at White River High School.
Mower, 17, who lives in Bonney Lake, is also a senior at White River High School. She is the daughter of Linda and John Mower. Her connection to the dairy industry comes through her father, a veterinarian for Plateau Veterinary Services in Enumclaw, where he helps many of the local dairies with their livestock.
One of the long-standing traditions for ambassadors is to submit a recipe using industry products.