Former Princess Kay still has butter head 32 years later - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Former Princess Kay still has butter head 32 years later

NEAR HAYFIELD, Minn. (KTTC) -- It's the last day of the Great Minnesota Get-Together.

You'll anxiously have to wait another year for the food, rides, and of course watching the carving of the Princess Kay of the Milkey Way butterheads.

So what happens to those huge heads of butter after the fair ends?

Of course you can eat the butter, all 90 pounds of it. Or you can give it away to family and friends. However, if you're looking to keep it as a keepsake, one local woman has a suggestion: Why not put the head of butter in the freezer?

Each year, sculptures of the winning Princess Kay and other finalists are carved, one per day, at the Minnesota State Fair. For many little girls growing up on a dairy farm, it's a dream come true. It certainly was for Donna Moenning, formerly known as Donna Schmidt.

"In 1980, I was crowned the region 5 Dairy Princess. I was crowned in Wilmar and hailed from a dairy farm, which is the tradition behind the butter heads that everybody travels to the cities to see," stated Donna.

"My kids think it looks really creepy, but it was me at the time," described Donna.

Now 32 years later.

"After this many years it just stays lying down in the freezer next to the porch chops and steaks," said Donna.

Donna can't bare the though of getting rid of her butterhead.

"To me it's a piece of Minnesota history and it's not so much about me, but Minnesota's love affair with the Minnesota State Fair, the butter heads at the state fair and the rich tradition of Minnesota being a dairy state," stated Donna.

To date, there are 4,000 dairy farms across the state. Donna's butterhead was carved out of a 45 pound block of butter  now the blocks weigh 90 pounds. Years ago the scraps of butter were served on crackers to visitors at the fair, now Donna says many of the princesses take the butter home for community corn cob feeds. One thing that has stayed the same for 41 years, is the sculptor, Linda Christenson.

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