Monday, December 18, 2006

Bulls, Broncs, and Barrels!

What a weekend! John Steenhoek and the Heartland Rodeo Company put on a great show this weekend at the Iowa State Fairgrounds with arm-jerking broncs, high kicking bulls, and blistering fast barrel racers. Bethany Jo Thompson, Miss Rodeo Aksarben, and I got to help run flags in the opening program. I got goosebumps when they announced my name as I carried Old Glory into the arena for the Star Spangled Banner; I was honored to be carrying the flag and Bugsy, John's big sorrel I was riding, was so fun to ride because he was long-legged, smooth, and could really move when he was encouraged to!

I was very fortunate to be a part of the production this weekend not only because I got to meet many great people associated with the IRCA and BOA circuits, but I got to sit in a sleigh with Santa and tell him how good I had been this year and that I would LOVE for him to bring me a truck to use for the year! (He said he would do the best he could, but not to get my hopes up too much because the elves were backed up making all of the other presents for this year.) I also got to spend the day with John Steenhoek at the Iowa Association of Fair Boards Convention and met many people from this great state.

This weekend got me excited for my upcoming year; I will have so much fun traveling, helping out at rodeos, and meeting people! As for now, I have a short break from classes and will be working out the details for my coronation celebration on January 6, 2007. It will be a great time with delicious food, great auction items, a 10-year-old singer who has a set of lungs that could set Gretchen Wilson back in her chair, and a dance afterward! There will be many queens present, so it is a night you do not want to miss! You can RSVP to me at or (712) 542-0857 or 1888 Uker Lane, Clarinda, IA 51632. In order to get a count for the number of meals to prepare, we ask that you contact us by December 20, 2006 if you would like to eat, otherwise, just arrive at Wibholm Hall on the fairgrounds in Clarinda, Iowa at 5:30 for social hour, 6:30 for auction time, and about 7:30 for the music! Hope to see you there!

Take care and Best Regards,


Monday, December 4, 2006

Back to the Real World

With a frosty "welcome home" of single digits and gusty winds, Paula, Bobbie, and I returned to Iowa on Sunday afternoon. Congratulations to Erika for placing in the top 10 at the Miss Rodeo America pageant and for winning the Central Region Scholarship. She did a great job the entire week at the pageant and I had fun watching her. I have big shoes to fill this next year, however, I am looking forward to how fun it will be.

Recapping from the last time I wrote, I listened to the 2nd and 3rd round of speeches and attended the Miss Rodeo America President's Luncheon where the contestants answered current event questions that were written in a format for the girls to state their knowledge and opinion on the subject. Wow! The questions were very tough and about very current and controversial issues . . . I am glad I have a year to prepare for that!

Thursday evening was the Ladies in Waiting Bowling social at the hotel where we got a chance to get to know one another and establish traveling partners. I had a lot of fun because the girls were great AND I had some pretty good luck bowling! (I wonder if that luck would have transferred over to gambling . . .) After the social event I had a quick change of clothes and then I was off to the first performance of the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo! It was the neatest thing I have ever been to . . . there was so much electricity and excitement in the air at the Thomas and Mack Arena. We had upper bowl seats directly above the roping boxes, so we had a great view of the timed events and a straight-on view of the bucking chutes. We saw many great rides and runs and it was a very smoothly-run rodeo. Thank you, Bob Britton, for the tickets--I had the time of my life!

Saturday finished up the week with the coronation of the new Miss Rodeo America, Ashley Andrews from North Dakota. I had a lot of fun watching and learning and am excited to go next year, but I am more excited for the upcoming year. My coronation is the first "official" event as Miss Rodeo Iowa, and then I am off to Denver and many other places! I will check in on this blog to update you on my travels throughout the year, so check back often to see what I have been doing and where I have been!

Until next time . . .