Kayla Vaughan of Sussex County
|Kayla Vaughan (left) of Sussex County is crowned the 50th New Jersey Dairy Princess by past State Dairy Princess Elizabeth Frank, also of Sussex County.|
BRIDGEWATER, N.J. – Following close competition between three very qualified candidates, Kayla Vaughan of Sussex County was crowned 50th New Jersey State Dairy Princess on November 24th.
Held in Bridgewater at Soriano’s at Parkside, the scene was certainly one fit for royalty. It was obvious that event planners were intent on making this year’s pageant, the state’s 50th, a surreal and memorable occasion for all involved. The food and décor would have been suitable for a beautiful wedding reception; and the company couldn’t be beat, with a who’s who of numerous previous princesses on hand for the golden anniversary event, as well as current royalty from Pennsylvania and New York. Individual judging was held earlier in the day at the Holiday Inn Express in North Branchburg.
Kayla, a 17-year-old 5th generation dairy farmer and daughter of Jon and Hollie Vaughan, was awarded the top honor after also winning both the school program and adult speech awards as well as scoring highest in the product knowledge exam. She comes to the program with experience serving her county, as well as serving on several school committees and in clubs, holding offices in her 4-H club, volunteer work, managing the milking parlor at the Sussex County Fair, and through her work on her family’s dairy farm and on others.
Kayla’s goal as state princess is to be a strong representative in spreading the good word about dairy. She is a student at Sussex County Technical School, where she is majoring in commercial baking, something that she hopes to put to good use someday on her own dairy farm, selling baked goods along with her farm’s dairy products.
Rounding out the competition and serving as this year’s alternates were Jenny Allen, 21, of Warren County, and Debra Winters, 17, of Somerset County.
Jenny, daughter of Shirley Sigler, will be serving the state as a second-year alternate. She is a student at Delaware Valley College, where she is majoring in agricultural education and is a member of the Dairy Society, Livestock Judging Team, FFA, Block & Bridle, Inter-club Council, and is a food liaison to the Student Government board. Jenny presented her very informative and well-prepared adult speech to the audience.
As Alternate State Princess, Jenny wants to share her passion for dairy with others and to make everyone more aware of how important the industry is from a health standpoint.
Debra, daughter of Kris and Karen Winters, is a senior at Hillsborough High School and comes to the program with experience serving her county, through 4-H, volunteer work, and serving in her church community. During the pageant, Debra presented her school program to the audience.
Debra’s goals as Alternate State Princess are to involve herself in the dairy world and to make more people aware of the benefits of dairy, specifically targeting the youth.
Master of ceremonies and New Jersey Dairy Princess Committee member Jo-An’ Van Doren vowed to keep all three of these talented and passionate young women busy during the upcoming year.
Judges for this year’s event were Elaine Noble, Bradford County, Pa.; and Douglas Denlinger, Farmshine, Lancaster County, Pa.