Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Fascination, Inspiration, and Awe

Hello, again!

There have been a whirlwind of activities since the last time I have had a chance to report! Monday night was the "Get Acquainted" party where we got to see all of the Miss Rodeo America contestants dressed in beautiful rhinestone-dazzled leather outfits. It was a very fun and relaxed atmosphere because the girls were not judged, and there was a dance after each contestant introduced herself again and got to say a few words about their pageant experience. I thought it was a great night because it gave us a chance to talk to the girls, try an array of tasty hors'devours, and dance the night away! I got to meet many of the other state "ladies in waiting" and took many pictures with them. There are many nice girls that I am looking forward to traveling with during the summer!

Tuesday was the PRCA Luncheon where the contestants paraded around in their chaps and answered rodeo knowledge questions in front of everyone. We ate a scrumptious Iowa chop and were entertained by Susie Dobbs. Troy Ellerman, the commissioner of the PRCA, spoke a few words of encouragement to the contestants, and Harry Vold, the stock contractor of Cheyenne Frontier Days, served as the auctioneer for the live auction benefiting the Miss Rodeo America Scholarship fund.

Later that night we filed into the ballroom of the Orleans hotel for the Miss Rodeo America fashion show . . . and what a production that was! Amanda Jenkins, the current Miss Rodeo America, was involved in a comical skit with many PRCA contract personnel notables, while PRCA announcer Tim Fuller served as the emcee. Set to a NASCAR theme, all of the contestants participated in choreographed dance routines while they showed off their personality and ability to relax and have fun.

When the room lights dimmed and spotlights surged to life, each contestant came out one-by-one and introduced herself by telling the audience her academic endeavours and future career aspirations. The dresses were stunning, the hair was beautiful, and the girls were polished. I sat and watched in awe and excitement because I know that I will get to be part of the elite group next year! Erika looked spectacular and modeled her fashion show dress better than anyone else . . . and not just because I am partial! Wednesday morning we listened to the first round of speeches, and I was impressed with quite a few of the girls' speeches, however, I am excited to try my hand next year!

The rest of the day we spend relaxing by driving to see Hoover Dam and visiting the local Dairy Queen. It was mind-boggling to think that the engineers were able to build something so great without the modern technology and equipment of today! We drove across into Arizona, which is in a different time zone that Las Vegas, however we survived the "car lag" just fine as we crossed back over into "Vegas time" about 10 minutes later. The Magnificent 3 and I just stayed in the car and drove over the dam, but we had a lot of fun watching people try to walk along the road and almost get blown away by the wind! It brought a whole new meaning to the term "wind tunnel"!

My Miss Rodeo America pageant experience as a lady in waiting has been great; I feel very fortunate that I have the opportunity to watch, take everything in, and learn for next year. I have been fascinated with the beauty of the contestants, inspired to study and do well next year, and in awe of how the "Miss Rodeo" organizations are able to create such a mature, poised, and well-rounded public spokesperson and ambassador for the greatest sport on dirt.

Until next time,


Saturday, November 25, 2006

Viva Las Vegas!

My fingers can hardly keep up with the excitement that is pulsing through my veins . . . I AM IN LAS VEGAS! As the plane touched down I had Paula by the right knee and Bobbie by the left knee as I was singing "Viva Las Vegas" (though I only know the chorus . . .) through the biggest smile my face would hold. Amidst all of the excitement, my yearning to see the lights and sights of the "Vegas Nightlife," I feel very fortunate to be here. Lucky me, I get to spend 10 fun-filled days chaperoned by 3 spectacular ladies, one of which we do not see much because she is busily and dilligently working with the Miss Rodeo America Committee to keep the pageant flowing and the daily blogs about the pageant updated. I fondly refer to her as "queen boss" or "your Majesty" (otherwise known as Bobbie Hinds my national director). My second compadre for the trip is Paula Jameson, the teen queen coordinator, and rounding out the "Majestic 3" is Jessie Kokjohn, the Miss Rodeo Iowa pageant coordinator. I have a lot to learn while I am out here . . . and I have no doubts in my mind they will steer me down the right path.

This morning I watched 28 beautiful, practiced, and poised state representatives check in to the 2007 Miss Rodeo America Pageant. Through the glazed look in my eye and permanent smile of awe . . . I was slightly overwhelmed to think that next year that will be me! Though I am a little apprehensive, I am more excited to think how much I will change, mature, and experience in the next 12 months. The rest of the afternoon was filled with perusing through the Miss Rodeo America hospitality room looking through the contestants' leather and rhinestone-clad scrapbooks, doing some shopping, and trying to absorb everything!

Tomorrow is a free day for us, however, the contestants will be interviewing with a panel of judges who have credential lists many miles long (I hope I will be ready for that next year)! Paula and I will be taking in "Cavalia" while Bobbie and Jessie take in the spa (or most likely nap). "Cavalia" is a precision equine and human acrobat and dance act . . . I am really excited to see it! Speaking of shows, I have been mesmerized by the advertisements for the Phantom of the Opera, so I hope that will be on the agenda before I leave.

With that, I leave you with the words of the flight attendant as we were exiting the plane . . . "What happens in Vegas . . . will wind up on the internet." I will check in with you in a few days to share with you more of my exciting adventures with the "Majestic 3" as we viva Las Vegas!


Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Amanda Eason Earns Miss Rodeo Iowa 2007 Title

Southwest Iowa cowgirl Amanda Eason traveled to the opposite side of the state in September to compete in the four-day Miss Rodeo Iowa Pageant. Competing against two other contestants, she was awarded the Horsemanship, speech and photogenics awards along with the title. For her efforts she received a tooled trophy saddle, belt buckle, clothing, horse supplies and many other awards. At the end of her reign she is eligible for a $1200 educational scholarship.

Amanda previously held the titles of Miss Sidney, Iowa Rodeo and Miss Rodeo Iowa State University. She is a pre-vet major and has applied for admittance in the College of Veterinary Science. Her goal is to not only have a successful large animal practice, but to also write about her experiences and become a published author.

On January 6 Amanda will receive the official crown and banner of Miss Rodeo Iowa at a Coronation Celebration held in her honor. This event is her major fundraiser to help cover her travel expenses and preparations for the 2008 Miss Rodeo America Pageant. During her reign she will make appearances at numerous functions within Iowa, including the Iowa State Fair, Iowa Horse Fair and rodeos in Sidney, Cherokee, Edgewood, Decorah and Fort Madison. She will travel to Cheyenne Frontier Days, the San Antonio Livestock Show and Rodeo and the Great Lakes Circuit Finals Rodeo in Louisville, Kentucky.

To learn more about the Miss Rodeo Iowa program, visit our homepage at Requests for apearances and potential sponsorships of Amanda can be requested by contacting National Director Bobbie Hinds at

Welcome to Amanda's Blog

An exciting year awaits Amanda as she travels throughout Iowa and surrounding states as Iowa's First Lady of Professional Rodeo. Selected at the Tri-State Rodeo in Fort Madison last September, she has been busy readying for her reign which will begin January 1, 2007. Check back frequently as she posts about her travels.