A total of 17 county pork queens and youth ambassadors will compete at the 2011 Iowa Pork Congress for the right to represent the Iowa pork industry at various pork promotional and educational events during the year.

The 39th annual Iowa Pork Congress will be held Jan. 26 and 27 at the Iowa Events Center in Des Moines.

Eleven candidates will compete for the coveted title of Iowa Pork Queen. All of the contestants are current county pork queens. The runner up will assist the queen as the Iowa pork princess.

There will be six young men and women competing for the title of Premier Pork Youth Ambassador.

All of the contestants will be judged on their overall knowledge of the pork industry and Iowa agriculture, interviewing and communications skills, poise and presentation.

The new queen, princess and premier pork youth ambassador will represent the Iowa pork industry throughout the year at various promotional and educational events around the state, as well as at out-of-state events.

The queen and youth ambassador each receive a $2,000 college scholarship and the princess is awarded a $1,000 scholarship from the Iowa Pork Producers Association.

The winners will be announced Jan 26 during the Iowa Pork Congress Banquet at the downtown Des Moines Marriott.

All of the youth candidates are listed below:

2011 Iowa Pork Queen Contestants

Kelsey Mumm, Hudson, Black Hawk County
Ariel Turnquist, Alta, Buena Vista County
Hollie Johnson, Wellsburg, Butler County
Sarah Wright, Atlantic, Cass County
Jessica McDonald, Hopkinton, Delaware County
Jennifer Wicks, Rockford, Floyd County
Cheyenne McNichols, Rippey, Greene County
Chelsey Branderhorst, Prairie City, Jasper County
Allison Dittmer, Columbia, Marion County
Hailey Ledger, Stockport, Van Buren County
Tara Gent, Wellman, Washington County

2011 Premier Pork Youth Ambassador Contestants
Ashley Beierschmitt, Fairbank, Bremer County
Codie Johnson, Wellsburg, Grundy County
Derek Brown, New Providence, Hardin County
Jacob Schulte, Fort Madison, Lee County
Nicole Patterson, St. Ansgar, Mitchell County
Jon Scholten, Sioux Center, Sioux County

Source: Iowa Pork Producers Association