Beyond a title: Turning young women into leaders

Farmington Ambassadors share their thoughts on Dew Days

by Maren Bauer
Sun Thisweek
Dakota County Tribune

With the school year wrapping up, children and families yearn for those summer days of freedom. With that freedom, also comes the knowledge that Farmington Dew Days approaches.

The food, the games, the music, the food, the sunshine, the community members and the food. Dew Days brings the community together in a joyous celebration, while also allowing folks a brief glimpse into the lives of local royalty.

MaKayla Ford, Emma Ulrich, and ReAnn Eidahl all share their thoughts on ambassadorship and Farmington Ambassador Royal Coronation, which will be held this year at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 13, at Boeckman Middle School.

Ford looks forward to the event because she loves “seeing the community come together as a whole to celebrate the same thing.” She likens it to the Minnesota State Fair, calling it “the great Farmington get-together.”

She also shares that she loves how little girls look up to them as role models, and see them as real-live princesseses. What Ford appreciates most about the program is that it goes beyond the tiara and flashing lights.

“This program has taught me how to be a better leader, enhance my communication skills and public speaking, and has shaped me into a mature young woman,” she said.

“Being an ambassador gave me the opportunity to strengthen my leadership skills, boost my confidence, and meet life-long friends,” Eidahl said.

In order to accomplish their dreams, the ambassadors recommend to potential applicants, and all students, to just do it. Whether they might be interested in the ambassadorship program, or any goal, the ambassadors encourage young people to set goals, step out of their comfort zone, and be sure to prioritize.

“Never give up; you can accomplish anything,” Ford said.

Even with goal-setting, though, Ulrich reflects that participating in the ambassadorship program has also had its challenges. The time commitment and necessity for efficient time-management have forced her to manage the tasks at hand and stay focused. She says that learning about other communities, sharing the love of her community, and growing her leadership skills, have made it all worth it.

The list of these young women’s activities seems never-ending. With AP classes, multiple jobs, leaders of other organizations, sports, music, family, etc., maybe Wonder Woman infused them with extra determination.

Following is a sampling of their responses to questions for the newspaper.
MaKayla Ford

What’s your favorite part about being an ambassador, especially a Farmington ambassador?

I would say my favorite part about being a Farmington ambassador would be representing the town that I have grew up in and to tell others how great our community is. Traveling all around the state of Minnesota meeting tons of other princesses along the way.  … One of my favorite things to do while in a parade representing Farmington would be to wave and blow kisses to young children that look up to princesses like us ambassadors.

What other activities do you like to do, what dreams/goals do you have?

I am currently attending the University of Wisconsin River Falls where I am on the Falcon Dance Team as one of the captains. I am also an Orientation and Transition Leader (OTL) for the new students coming into River Falls. … I also like to spend time with my family, friends, and my second family the Farmington ambassadors. My goals/dreams in life is to graduate from River Falls with my biology-medical degree and to start my career with helping others. My goal has been to helps others and to find ways to cure them in ways that no one has before. I will be starting in echocardiology with helping adults then going back to get my degree to help with children. I would love to work at a children’s hospital because that place knows how to save lives and that’s exactly what I want to do.
Emma Ulrich

What’s your favorite part about being an ambassador, especially a Farmington ambassador?

Every year my favorite part of Dew Days is the parade.  It’s the parade debut for the new ambassadors which is always exciting and the whole community comes together to watch. The parade is full of everything Farmington has to offer and is fun for the whole family.

What other activities do you like to do, what dreams/goals do you have?

Other than the Farmington Ambassador Program I am involved in student council, National Honor Society, Business Professionals of America, and the trapshooting team. Next year I will start my first year at the University of St. Thomas to pursue a degree in business.
ReAnn Eidahl

What are you looking forward to most at Dew Days? What do you recommend to first-time attendees?

There are so many fun events happening during Dew Days! From the car cruise, Flavors of Farmington, to the Dew Days Parade, you really can’t go wrong with your options! For those who are attending Dew Days for the first time, definitely find the Dew Days schedule in the papers and plan out what you would like to attend. Along with the parade, Flavors of Farmington is a great way to get a little taste of what Farmington is like! Come enjoy some awesome food and listen to music while being in the company of good people.

What other activities do you like to do, what dreams/goals do you have?

My short term dream is to graduate Gustavus Adolphus College in 2020 with a Bachelor’s Degree in communication studies and business management. After graduation, I plan to travel and explore all sorts of cultures and food! My dream job is to be the business development manager for a cosmetics company. I think it’s important for cosmetics companies to promote self-love and confidence, while promoting affordable and cruelty-free beauty products.

Contact Maren Bauer at [email protected].

Farmington Ambassadors at Farmington Dew Days in 2016. MaKayla Ford, Emma Ulrich, and ReAnn Eidahl are reflecting on Dew Days and ambassadorship this week. File photo