World School Milk Day

Friday, September 28, 2012
Tribune photo by Clint Confehr Rosemary Heaton's daughter, Johnnora, reaches to pet Janice, a Guernsey cow, on the Chapel Hill Elementary School stage while Rosemary's sister, Briana Strasser, left, looks toward the audience of nearly 700 students, teachers, farmers and others.

By Clint Confehr

Senior Staff Writer

CHAPEL HILL - Nearly 700 students, teachers, administrators and farmers on Wednesday celebrated World School Milk Day with an assembly including a cow-milking contest on stage.

Chapel Hill Elementary School assistant principal Dawn Kirby was declared the winner over principal Dean Delk. At the end of the timed milking contest, he conceded there was more milk in her bucket.

Delk beat Kirby in the milking contest last year.

"The milk we drink does not come easy," Delk told his audience before introducing Angela Lamb, cafeteria manager at CHES.

"I think we're the only school in the county that does this," Lamb said before the assembly. "Local farmers donated a free carton of milk for each child."

Students drank the half pint at lunch. Dessert was cow pie patties with vanilla ice cream.

"And that's not something we can have much these days with the new government regulations on school lunches," Lamb said.

There was no fruit or vegetable on the lunchroom table used for the milk and cookie-eating contest won by Jessica Coleman. Her crunch and gulp method bested that of Laura Burke, who said she planned to just shove cookies in as fast as she could.

"I tried not to eat too much at lunch," Burke said, confiding sheepishly, "I actually have to go to the dentist this afternoon."

Representing the Southeast United Dairy Industry Association Inc. were Industry Relations Manager Denise Jones and School Program Account Manager Joan Benton, who publicized the annual international event. World School Milk Day celebrates the importance of school milk in children's diets and the dairy farm families who work hard to provide it.

More than a dozen dairy farmers, including Tennessee Dairy Producers Association president Tony White of New Columbia Highway, attended the school assembly and were applauded by the children, staff, friends and families.