Speechless is something that does not usually happen to me, however, I cannot put my finger on a word that encompasses the appreciation, surprise, gratitude, excitement, and honor I feel when I think about the support I have of everyone who helped with my Coronation Celebration. Over 100 people donated items for the event, and many others, including my family and queen committee, were a part of making the night a success. Over 300 people packed Wibholm Hall in Clarinda, Iowa for an exciting celebration. I would like to thank each and every one of the people who attended--and especially those who had long road trips to travel to Southwest Iowa. I was so happy to see everyone and could not believe that so many people had taken time out of their busy schedules to come join me!
The evening began with a delicious meal followed by introductions of visiting royalty. I was very honored to be in the beautiful, shining presence of Erika Harlan (Miss Rodeo Iowa 2006), Aleigh Beahm (Miss Teen Rodeo Iowa 2006), Holly Soucie (Iowa High School Rodeo Queen), Kelsea Walker (Miss Rodeo Illinois 2007), Racquel Telfer (Miss Rodeo Lenox 2006), Courtney Stark (Miss Teen Rodeo Lenox 2006), Lauren Scholz (Miss Sidney, Iowa Rodeo), Nicole Watkins (Miss Rodeo Whiting), and the newly crowned Miss Rodeo Iowa Teen 2007, Rachel Burton. Eleven-year-old Alexis Hawley of Burlington dazzled everyone with her powerful voice in two songs by Carrie Underwood, and 4 wonderful contestants (Steve Eason, Chance Turner, Ken Whitehill, and Andrew Bexton) tried their hands at rodeo royalty in the Mr. Rodeo Iowa contest. My dad, having a slight advantage over the rest of the contestants because he has been familiar with the "queen world" for the last few years, managed to snatch the title away from first runner-up Chance Turner by the smallest of margins.
Paula Jameson of Bridgewater, Iowa created a song-accompanied slide show of pictures from the Miss Rodeo Iowa pageant and our recent trip to Las Vegas. I love watching the clips and dancing to the "Viva Las Vegas" tune that plays while pictures of the Belagio light show, National Finals Rodeo, and Vegas Vic flash across the screen. Paula has done so many things to help me out; I am very fortunate to have met her and owe a large part of the fun I will have as Miss Rodeo Iowa to her because I would not be "blogging" now if it was not for her.
Following the video, the live auction began and many great items were sold to raise money for my travel and wardrobe expenses I will incur throughout the year. Thank you to everyone who donated auctions items and also to those who purchased the great items. The auction went on for a longer time than I thought it would, but I was sure to tell the audience that though I apologized for the auction running long, I was not going to apologize for the wonderful support evident in the items from the local businesses that was embodied in the lagrge support they showed me through the many auction items. All in all, I had a wonderful evening and smile every time I think about the night.