I wrote this post in 2011 for Indiana's Family of Farmers about the Indy 500. I had just moved to Indiana one month prior and was learning a lot about the race. Like my blog posts comparing dairy farming to Dollywood or the SuperBowl, there are quite a few similarities. Enjoy!
|This was awesome! On media tour at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway with the 2011 Milk Men (2011)
Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines! What better way to celebrate May than with what has been referred to as the greatest spectacle in racing—the Indy 500. For many families, the Indy 500 has been a tradition for generations. Before heading to the race, don’t forget to pack water, sunscreen and a camera to capture all of the festivities. After the race, celebrate like the winners do—with an ice-cold bottle of milk. In addition to being a refreshing treat on a hot day, milk is one of the easiest and most efficient ways to increase calcium and vitamin D consumption.
The tradition of Milk in the Victory Lane began in the 1930s when Louis Meyer requested buttermilk to quench his thirst after winning the Indy 500. So we all know that the winner receives the milk, but where do they get it? From the dairy farmers of course!
Dairy farming is a family tradition for Indiana’s more than 1,200 dairy families, much like spending Memorial Day weekend at the track is a family tradition for many spectators.
|2011 Fastest Rookie J.R. Hildebrand (2011)
|Look who I ran into at the track? Dario Franchitti (2012)
Dairy farming and the Indy 500 have more in common than just sharing this great tradition. Commitment, passion and pride are three words that come to mind when thinking of dairy farming and the Indy 500. Race drivers take pride in winning the race, but so do fans. Accomplishing such a feat is definitely something to be proud of. Dairy farmers take pride in the land they farm, the cows they take care of and in providing you with wholesome, delicious dairy products. Dairy farmers are committed. They are passionate. It’s a 24/7/365 job.
It’s hard work, but they feed the world. Can you imagine life without farmers? I can’t.
Drivers and fans are also committed and passionate. From battling traffic, then sitting in the blistering sun or pouring rain, many fans will do just about anything to watch the race.
Likewise, dairying is more than just ‘a day at the office.’ Dairy farmers are committed to excellence. They produce one of the purest, most tested and regulated foods in the world. For many dairy farmers, dairying is in their blood. It’s a family tradition, and it’s what they love to do. In this profession, the days can be long and vacations few and far between. But at the end of the day, it comes down to doing what you love and loving what you do. Got milk?