Miss Rodeo South Dakota: November update
As promised, I’ll report on Omaha, Nebraska. I am so glad I had the opportunity to be a flag girl again for the Wrangler Million Dollar Tour, especially with a great group of girls! The best part about wearing identical outfits, on black horses with white saddles, was nobody being able to tell us blondes apart. Check my blog at MissRodeoSouthDakota2012.blogspot.com for more pictures from the trip. Rodeo is known for camaraderie unlike any other sport. Long after my year as Miss Rodeo South Dakota is over, I will still keep in touch with some of the outstanding women I have met and grown to love this year.
The following week I was headed to Turtle Lake, ND, to meet up with fellow Badlands Circuit queen, Sadie Wardner, Miss Rodeo North Dakota. Together we headed north to Minot to get ready for the Badlands Circuit Finals and Miss Rodeo North Dakota pageant. During one of our school visits we were asked the standard “Are you two sisters?” question, and a new one about why we checked our guns at the rodeo, since all the cowboys wear guns in the movies. Laura Taysom, Miss Rodeo Wisconsin and Sabrina Behr, Miss Rodeo Minnesota joined us once the rodeo got under way. I was ecstatic to see Krystal Carlascio win the title of Miss Rodeo North Dakota 2013! We were college roommates at South Dakota State University, and I know next year the Badlands Circuit will be well represented with her and my successor, Kristina Maddocks. I am very grateful to live in the Midwest, and honestly believe we have some of the most gracious people living within our borders!
After being on the road for two weeks, my schedule did not let up once I was home. I spoke at our local cancer support group about the need to encourage others and sharing my family’s experience with cancer. I am so thankful I had such an upbeat, positive mother; little did I know ten years later I would be using her same tactics to stay motivated and focused while preparing for the Miss Rodeo America Pageant!
I grew up listening to “Bandy the Rodeo Clown,” so I instantly agreed to present Moe Bandy with an honorary membership to the Hills and Valley Riding Club during his concert in Sisseton the following day. The kindergarteners were learning the letter c for cowboy, so I spent an afternoon reading to them. I found myself in front of one of their classrooms with the magic pointer, while they all sang “Cowboy Countdown” for me in between stories. This job is the most unpredictable position I have held yet!
The SDRA Finals in Rapid City is always a fun time to get together with the other South Dakota queens, and cheer on and catch up with friends across the state that I grew up competing with. I had to make it home that Sunday for my brother’s confirmation. The lack of sleep and long drive made me a little more emotional than I was ready for when Derek gave his statement of faith, using our mom’s favorite verse, Isaiah 40:31, “those that wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not be faint.”
We are often told to count our blessings and appreciate the people we have in our lives. The month of October was full of those moments. I cannot properly express how grateful and humbled I am to have spent this year as Miss Rodeo South Dakota. The joy that it brings to younger kids, and the ability to encourage other rodeo competitors is a job I would not mind having for one more year! I have heard people say it is not what you get when you achieve your goals, but who you become that truly matters. With my scrapbook for Miss Rodeo America almost complete, and I look back on the past year, it is the people who have shared these memories with me that make all of this absolutely priceless!
Miss Rodeo South Dakota 2012
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As a routine management matter, the Teddy Roosevelt National Park plans to remove a few horses from its herd.