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Dairy enthusiasts gather for annual ice cream sundae in Harrisburg

PD Editor Emily Caldwell Published on 20 June 2011

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Pennsylvania dairy producers and promoters couldn't have asked for better ice cream weather for the annual June Dairy Month celebration, held at the Capitol Building in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The celebration included an official proclamation from Governor Tom Corbett, declaring June as Pennsylvania Dairy Month.

The highlight of the day was the building and serving of the famous giant ice cream sundae, made with 90 gallons of Turkey Hill ice cream.

Pennsylvania Secretary of Agriculture George Greig provided opening remarks. As a dairy farmer for 30 years in Crawford County, Pennsylvania, Greig knew firsthand the commitment and work ethic it takes to provide milk and dairy products. He highlighted the 7,400 Pennsylvania dairy farm families, who produce 5.6 percent of the nation's milk supply.

Story continues after photo slideshow.

Following Secretary Greig's comments, Pennsylvania State Dairy Princess Marissa Weidensaul addressed the crowd, introducing herself and explaining her role as a princess.

"As dairy promoters, we're challenged with explaining to consumers what Pennsylvania's 7,400 dairy farms mean to them," she said. She told the audience that Pennsylvania's dairy industry provides more than 40,000 jobs, and that dairy producers play a vital role not only in Pennsylvania's economy, but also in environmental stewardship and community leadership.

Blair County dairy farmer Larry Kulp was next up to the podium and built upon Weidensaul's comments regarding environmental responsibility. Kulp also explained how producers make cow comfort and milk quality priorities on their operations.

"As dairy farmers, we strive to provide a safe, wholesome product in an environmentally and socially responsible way," he said.

Following the reading of the June Dairy Month proclamation, producers and promoters went to work building the sundae. Along with the 90 gallons of ice cream, the structure included 10 gallons of chocolate fudge, 10 gallons of cherries, 30 pounds of chopped pecans, and was topped with real whipped cream and a 12-inch ball of cherries.

Visit the Mid-Atlantic Dairy Association website to learn more about events and information promoting Pennsylvania dairy farmers. PD

PHOTO:
(Left to right) Dairy producer Larry Kulp, Pennsylvania State Dairy Princess Marissa Weidensaul and Pennsylvania Agriculture Secretary George Greig put the final touches on the giant ice cream sundae. Photo provided by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture.

Slideshow photos by PD Editor Emily Caldwell.

Related article:
Pennsylvania celebrates June Dairy Month with giant ice cream sundae (2010)

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