INDIANAPOLIS – It’s not often that two Hoosier dairy farmers get to say that every single driver in the Indianapolis 500 wants to meet them. However, that is exactly the case for Joe Kelsay and Kim Minich. On Sunday May 28, Kelsay and Minich will be standing, cold milk in hand, awaiting the victor of the 2017 Indianapolis 500.
Each year two Milk People are selected by the American Dairy Association Indiana (ADAI) to take on the special task of handing out milk in Victory Circle. The Veteran Milk Person, Kelsay’s role this year, hands the drink of milk to the winning driver. The Rookie Milk Person then hands milk to the winning team owner and winning chief mechanic. Last year’s Rookie, Kelsay was able to witness Alexander Rossi take his historic drink of milk as the winner of the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500.
Kelsay’s family is of Whiteland, IN and has a farm of around 450 cows where they host over 20,000 visitors each year. Minich hails from La Porte, IN and was recently recognized as the Indiana Dairy Producer’s ‘Outstanding Young Dairy Producer’ in 2015.
The legendary Louis Meyer, Indy’s first three-time winner (1928, ’33, ’36) is acknowledged as the driver who launched the Bottle of Milk Tradition when he asked for a glass of his favorite beverage – buttermilk – to quench his thirst after a grueling 500 miles in 1933. Three years later, Meyer was photographed in Victory Lane drinking milk.
Milk was presented off and on during the next several years until, in 1956, the Bottle of Milk was made a permanent part of the post-race celebration by Indianapolis Motor Speedway owner Anton “Tony” Hulman.
2017 marks the 62nd consecutive year for the beloved tradition – one that Kim Minich and Joe Kelsay are excited to continue on May 28.
For further information contact:
Jenni Browning, 765.623.1739/cell, 317.842.7955/office, Browning@WinnersDrinkMilk.com