So many little girls dream of becoming a princess, a fairytale few are able to realize unless they want to become a Dairy Princess. Last evening at the 58th Annual New York State Dairy Princess Coronation in Syracuse, girls from across New York State who have served as their county's dairy princess since Spring 2020, promoting milk and dairy products in their community, competed for the New York State crown.

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Chenango County Dairy Princess Shelby Benjamin of Norwich was named the 2021-2022 New York State Dairy Princess according to the American Dairy Association North East (ADANE). Benjamin is currently a graduate student at SUNY Cortland after finishing her undergraduate work at SUNY Oneonta.

Chosen as the first alternate was Holly Niefergold of Erie County and the second alternate is Elizabeth Hyman of Jefferson County.

Benjamin replaces 2020-2021 New York State Dairy Princess Natalie Vernon and her duties will include serving as "spokespeople and advocate for dairy farmers by engaging with and educating consumers on the nutritional benefits of milk and dairy foods, how farmers care for their cows and their land in order to produce a sustainable product and the importance of the dairy industry to the State’s economy." Benjamin will attend local dairy princess pageants, farmer meetings, state and county fairs, and  dairy product sampling events at grocery stores.

For those who wish to review the recorded live stream of last evening's pageant visit

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