Madera queens to represent Central Cal
Courtesy of Julie Stringfield
Madera will be represented at the national Miss United States Agriculture pageant with Brittany Anderson and Brooklyn Stringfield. Brittney is the 2021 California Miss United States Agriculture queen, while Brooklyn is the 2021 Central California Little Miss United States Agriculture queen.
In April, two Madera residents were crowned agriculture royalty and will now compete on the national stage while representing Central California and California.
Brittany Anderson was named the 2021 California Miss United States Agriculture while her little sister, Brooklynn Stringfield, 9, was named the 2021 Central California Little Miss United States Agriculture.
“She’s a regional queen, but is still considered a state queen so she will go to nationals,” Anderson said.
According to Anderson, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s crowning was more like an appointment.
“We did an application process and filled out everything online,” she said. “They got back to whoever fit the role the best. They asked us our experience in ag and different things about us. Other states have a pageant process. COVID ruined that, but we hope to have a pageant in California.”
Anderson was first contacted about applying to become a Miss United States Agriculture during her senior year at Liberty High School in 2018.
“One of the regional directors reached out to me two years prior to me signing up and joining the organization,” she said. “They told me I would be a good fit for this and why don’t I look into it. I looked into it over the years. Because it was my senior year in high school, I had a lot of things going on like FFA and 4-H. I wanted to get adjusted into college before I did anything. This was a perfect fit because I can advocate and do what I love.”
Anderson said that by doing some of the requirements for the Miss United States Agriculture, it allowed her to fill in some down time during the quarantine and also allowed her to do activities with her younger sister.
“We had nothing last year because of COVID,” Anderson said. “This has really helped me tremendously and kept me super busy. It’s given us something to look forward to and do. I loved every minute of working together.”
Anderson is a 2018 graduate of Liberty High School. She was a four-year FFA member and spent nine years with Dixieland 4-H. She showed pigs in 4-H and was a member of leadership in both FFA and 4-H. She also showed cattle while in FFA.
Anderson is now one of the leaders in the Dixieland 4-H and is enjoying the role.
“It’s kind of rewarding,” she said. “After all these years of pouring my heart and soul into the organization, I get to go back to it because I miss it. It was my life. It was all I knew. After I graduated, I didn’t know what to do. That’s where this came into play. I was able to go back and give back to the two organizations that helped me become who I am today.”
Anderson is attending Fresno State with an ag education major to become an agriculture major.
“They are definitely looking for leadership skills as well as advocating for the ag industry,” Anderson said. “ It is very important that we are big advocates. Our motto is teach, inspire and advocate. They want the members to better themselves while bettering the community.”
Although there isn’t too big of an award for the state title, there is a $5,000 scholarship for the national title. The sisters will attend nationals in Orlando, Florida, in June.
“We are both in the top 10,” Anderson said. :We’re super excited to represent California and show what we’re made of. We have family back there so we’re going to see them when we go there.”
In order to head to the nationals, both Anderson and Stringfield have had help along the way.
“My sponsors are Glitz and Glam Boutique in Chowchilla, Midland Tractor, Julie Stringfield Photography, Central Valley Vet in Chowchilla and my biggest one was Les Schwab Tire,” Anderson said. “They helped me go to nationals and pay for my entry fee. With our sponsors, we are thankful to have them and their support. It’s cool they believe in us and that they want to support us to become advocates. We really appreciate their support.”
“My sponsors are Midland Tractor, Julie Stringfield Photography and Galaxy Dance Academy,” Stringfield said.
“We’ve had lots of family and friends donate money, as well,” said mother Julie.
According to Julie, the two compete for advocacy points, which is a point system determined on what you do in the ag industry,” she said. “You get certain points based on what you do. They go on farm tours, see local farmers. They are supposed to educate the un-ag-related people how important ag is in our lives. They have gone to a lot of different places. They went to learn about pistachios, to Maddox Dairy. They hit every little place. Another big part is they do a lot of service projects for the community.”
“We’ve done daycares and work with some local elementary schools. I’ve worked with Liberty FFA,” Anderson said.
“It’s not required, but it’s one of the favorite things about our titles, that we’ve been able to do a lot of community service projects,” she said. “We’ve done about six. My first was Operation Appreciation. I worked with community members and businesses and gathered items to make goodie bags for local law enforcement. My goal was to cover Madera County Sheriff’s Department because I was doing it in honor of my uncle who was a deputy. I was able to go to six departments in four different cities. I made over 600 bags — snacks, hand sanitizers, lotion, tissues, chap sticks, pens — all stuff they can use on their shifts. With so much hate in the world, we need to bring a light to them. My motto throughout the year is to be a light. Become one the community can look up to and work worth.”
“We’ve done blanket drives for the homeless, a book drive for teachers, canned food drive for Fresno State and cards for veterans,” Brooklynn said. “Whenever I see a veteran around, I give them a card that says ‘Thank you for your service.’”
While Anderson knew she was applying for the Miss United States Agriculture pageant, they kept it from Brooklynn. She didn’t find out she won until it was announced on Facebook.
“I wanted to do it, but I didn’t know I was getting into it,” Brooklynn said. “They surprised me. They tried to keep it a surprise from me. I wanted to do this. It’s really cool to win the first year. I didn’t know they even signed me up.”
“I didn’t want to tell her in case she didn’t get it because I didn’t want to deal with the downfall. I hid it until she got it,” Julie said.
When Brooklynn found out she was named Central California Miss United States Agriculture, she called many of her family members, but they already knew.
“I was super excited,” she said. “ I told everybody at dance and my best friend Molly. I’m nervous and excited for nationals. We’re both in the Top 10. We both have a good chance at getting something so I’m excited for that. It makes it easier with Brittany.”
Because both sisters are entered for the National pageant, they are practicing together.
“Since I am with her, it makes it a lot easier,” Anderson said. “We practice together whether it’s asking us questions or practicing our stage walks. It’s really cool to have something we can do together.”
“The other queens call us the California sisters,” Brooklynn said.
Brooklynn also won Madera’s Got Talent for her age group and competes with Galaxy Dance Academy. She was also in the Nutcracker with the Central California Ballet.
“She is busy with ag and dance,” Stringfield said. “She lives on the stage. It’s the talking part she is shy.”
The sisters are looking forward for their time on the national stage.
“It will be my first time on a plane and furthest traveling,” Brooklynn said.
She attends Chawanakee Academy and is also a member of the Dixieland.4-H club and will show her first animal at the Madera Fair this year.