The 50th World Dairy Expo (WDE) kicked off Oct. 4 with an opening ceremony to welcome the first of the expo attendees to Madison, Wis., and to unveil a 50th anniversary gift.
Recognized as the meeting place for the global dairy industry, the annual WDE attracts more than 70,000 attendees from more than 90 countries to Madison each year. This year's event runs through Oct. 8 and has the theme “Celebrate 50!” to commemorate its golden anniversary.
The anniversary gift, a 6,900 lb. cow carved from Dakota Mahogany stone, has a permanent home outside the northeast corner of New Holland Pavilion 1. Named Miss Madison, the cow stood covered throughout the ceremony before being welcomed to the grounds by a crowd of onlookers.
“In celebration of World Dairy Expo’s golden anniversary, we are pleased to share a new gift – a gift we hope will become an expo icon for the next 50 years and beyond,” WDE president Al Deming told those in attendance.
Miss Madison was constructed by a local company from a 47,000 lb. block of stone. The gift is reminiscent of the first WDE in 1967, when its iconic globe was gifted to the Alliant Energy Center.
“This masterpiece – a compilation of the seven breeds exhibited at World Dairy Expo – represents the expo’s storied past and exciting future,” Deming said.