Tuesday, July 24, 2007

On the Road Again!

Look who I found at the Lenox Rodeo: Lauren Scholz (Miss Sidney, Iowa Rodeo) and Rachel Burton (Miss Rodeo Iowa Teen)!

What a fun-filled week!

Rachel Burton, Miss Rodeo Iowa Teen, and I had a busy but fun run of rodeos in Southern Iowa. We began the week at the Centerville, Iowa Rodeo in conjunction with the Appanoose County Fair. John Steenhoek of the Heartland Rodeo Company supplied the great stock for the two-day event that kept the crowd entertained throughout the evening. Rachel and I got to help run flags in the opening ceremony as well as clear the arena during the timed events. I would like to commend the Appanoose County Fairboard for a great fair. The rodeo was a great addition to the list of entertainment; I think every county fair should have a rodeo!

Upon leaving Centerville we headed to Lenox, Iowa for the rodeo produced by the Rite 'N' Gear Rodeo Company and contractor Barry Wright. Rachel and I had a fun time helping with the mutton busters and carrying flags in the grand entry. We were able to watch and enjoy the rodeo from the autograph table which enabled us to meet many of the rodeo spectators during the performance. We were joined by the Lenox Royalty, Katie Stark and Suzi Fife, Lacey Glover (Miss United Rodeo Association), Suzette Walker (Miss Teen Rodeo Iowa), and Lauren Scholz (Miss Sidney, Iowa Rodeo). I also got to be in the presence of the great Miss Rodeo Illinois, Kelsea Walker, who works for Barry Wright. I had not seen Kelsea for over a month so she was quite the sight for sore eyes with her Angora "woolie" chaps!
From Lenox Rachel and I moved to Bedford, Iowa for an Extreme Bull Riding Tour Event held in conjunction with the Taylor County Fair. It was great to see Todd Crase and Shad Smith again, and even more fun to watch the event. The tour attracted many PBR standout riders to Southwest Iowa. Todd and Ryan Skillett do an outstanding job with the production of the event, complete with fireworks, smoke machines, and lighting the arena on fire for the short round. Shawn "Boom Boom" Thompson is also a vital part of the show by keeping the crowd entertained and light-hearted from his barrel.
Shad Smith prides himself, though humble as they come, in the quality of his bucking stock. Many of his bulls are on the PBR Tour and will buck at the PBR Finals in Las Vegas this fall. Shad's Double "S" Bucking Bull Ranch resides in Sidney, Iowa which makes me proud because of another standout from our state! During the Extreme Event there was a section of freestyle bullfighting which was definitely a crowd-pleaser! The bulls were small, quick, and mean which made for some great bullfighting! Great job Shad, Todd, and Ryan for the work you do to make your events "the hottest show on dirt"!While in Bedford, I ran into my aunt, uncle, and cousins, who showed their lambs at the fair. Though they tried to play "tough guys" by not smiling, Rachel and I talked Paul and Dalton into posing in a picture with us because Paul won champion and reserve champion rate of gain--and this was his first year of 4H! Congratulations, Paul, on a job well-done!

On Monday I headed to Nevada, Iowa to judge the Story County 4H Horse Fun Show. I had a great time selecting winners in the Costume Race, Tandem Back to Back Class, Adult Western Pleasure, Water Glass Pleasure, etc. Thank you, Claire Hall, for the invitation and opportunity to have fun with the kids and their parents!

This week Kelsea Walker (Miss Rodeo Illinois), Katie Zuidema (Miss Rodeo Michigan), and I are headed to the "Daddy of 'em All" in Cheyenne, Wyoming! I am very excited and looking forward to the trip because I have driven by the arena several times, but have never stopped or been to the rodeo. I cannot wait to get there and experience the atmosphere of one of the most famous rodeos in the world! As neat as it is, the host family I will be staying with is the home of a future vet school classmate that I will get to meet!

I hope you are enjoying your summer as much as I because it is flying by way too quickly! I cannot believe it is almost time for the rodeo season to slow down and school to begin! I will be sure to take many pictures in Cheyenne, so please check back in a few weeks!