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Snohomish County Dairy Ambassador crowned
SILVANA Stanwood resident Adrienne Schoenbachler was crowned the Snohomish County Dairy Ambassador for 2007-2008 at the 52nd annual coronation April 21.
It will be her job to represent the Snohomish County dairy industry. She will be assisted by Hannah Donaldson of Sultan and Liz Soler of Arlington, 17-year-old high school juniors like Schoenbachler, who were named alternate dairy ambassadors in Silvana Hall.
Schoenbachler currently holds a 4.0 GPA in the Seton Home Study School and earned Grand Champion Fitting and Showing honors at the 2006 Evergreen State Fair.
She credited her upbringing on her family farm of 140 cows, mostly registered Holsteins, with teaching her how to maintain a work ethnic and solve problems creatively.
Theres no other job that requires you to center your days so completely around your work, said Schoenbachler of dairy farming. Theres no such thing as sick days.
Schoenbachler recalled her father, Fred, thanking her for not complaining about her chores, even though one of them was scraping cow manure with handheld tools.
The tractor makes the first pass at the manure, and I scrape out the corners, Schoenbachler said. When I was 11 years old, I couldnt keep up with the tractor. My dad said it was okay, but I saw it as a problem, so I decided to treat it like a competitive sport, like I was racing the tractor. Now, Im as fast as the tractor, if not faster.
Schoenbachler opened and closed her speech with picturesque descriptions of the sunsets over her family farm. She stated her mantra, Thank God I could grow up on a dairy farm, and know the feeling of a job well done.
Donaldson, who earned top prizes with her Jersey heifer at the Puyallup Fair, admitted that the first dairy calf she raised literally seemed to start on the wrong foot.
I liked her, but when I looked at her, she fell over, Donaldson said. I thought Id broken her, but my dad told me that some cows just dont like the halter. We named her Kerplunk.
Donaldson expressed enthusiasm for educating her peers about dairy farming, which she noted is the second-largest agricultural industry in the state. She also touted the health benefits of dairy products, whose calcium helps strengthen teeth and bones.
Soler remembered having her playpen in her familys barn when she was three, and starting to compete in fairs when she was nine.
By the time I got to the Evergreen State Fair, it took a lot of persuasive reasoning and arguing to get this little girl to go into the showroom, Soler said. When I won second place, though, I had a big smile on my small face.
Soler has since connected with her calves on an emotional level, and continues to discover aspects of the dairy industry that fascinate her.
I feel like Ive barely scratched the surface, Soler said. Its been a significant part of my life, thats made me who I am today and who Ill be tomorrow.
Trista VanBerkum, Washington State Dairy Ambassador for 2006-2007, praised Schoenbachler, Donaldson and Soler, as well as Snohomish County Dairy Ambassador candidates Tanya Moman of Arlington and Emily Neff of Marysville, for the passion they demonstrated, not only about the dairy industry and its products, but also about its community.
Hannah Zorn, Snohomish County Dairy Ambassador for 2006-2007, promised her replacements that theyd have a fun, busy and informative