It was just over a year ago that I packed my bags heading off to Edmonton as Miss Williams Lake Stampede for the Miss Rodeo Canada pageant and won the title of Miss Rodeo Canada Princess 2011.
On Nov. 10, 2011 I handed my crown back to the Miss Rodeo Canada Organization after an action packed year of events.
So how does one sum up 12 months, 365 days, and 8,760 hours of being Miss Rodeo Canada Princess 2011 in a few short paragraphs?
It seems impossible at first but looking back at all of the amazing memories it makes the impossible worth a try.
At the age of 18 winning this title has provided me with a year of great personal growth.
I have not only been blessed to attend more than 400 appearances, met countless, wonderful new people, but have the continued support of my family, friends, hometown community and many sponsors making this experience even more meaningful.
From my first event as Miss Rodeo Canada Princess 2011, to those final days at the 38th annual Canadian Rodeo finals, this has truly been a year of many surprises, unforgettable memories and various lessons that I did not expect to learn as a rodeo princess.
I am proud to say that I represented one of the greatest sports in the world.
To be able to represent my country through the Canadian Professional Rodeo Association has been an honour I hold dear to my heart.
I have attended more than 25 rodeos through Western Canada and the United States driving more than 40,000 kilometers (30,000 in my Cariboo GMC Equinox). Each rodeo I have attended reminded me that this sport is not just a hobby; it’s a lifestyle.
Our western way of life will continue to grow and flourish with the amazing people who work hard to keep it alive through the sport of professional rodeo.
Throughout my year as Miss Rodeo Canada Princess 2011, I have eaten more pancakes than any normal human being should, signed my name more times than I probably will for the rest of my life, locked myself out of my host families’ home (with crown and banner inside the house) just before an event, heard my name pronounced differently at every rodeo, become an expert at packing as many items as possible into one suitcase, ridden good horses as well as, let’s say, unique horses, used more than 10 bottles of hairspray and shoved countless bobby pins into my hat to the point where I think I have permanent dents!
I wouldn’t change any of it for the world.
Without the Miss Rodeo Canada board, sponsors and volunteers this program would not be possible.
I would like to thank everyone who has helped me through my contestant stage and Miss Rodeo Canada Princess reign and helped bring my many items home.
I appreciate your support, kind words and sponsorship. I would especially like to thank my family; I could not have gone through this past year without your love and support. Words cannot express how thankful I am to everyone for helping make this an amazing year.
I am looking forward to all the great future endeavors I have ahead of me. The next step in my busy life will be attending the University of Lethbridge in January of 2012, where I will be taking a combined major in education and theatre.
Although this was not originally to be part of my farewell, I have had many people ask why no Miss Rodeo Canada Princess 2012?
In August of 2011 Miss Rodeo Canada board met to determine if there was to be a Miss Rodeo Canada pageant for 2012.
After much deliberation and exploration of options, sponsorship and finances, it was determined that they would continue with the pageant but will no longer be crowning a princess (there have only been three princesses in the history of the program). They would go back to having a runner-up. The board is currently striving to preserve a Canadian Western Tradition celebrated for more than 55 years.
Since 1955, the sport of rodeo has been proudly represented across the country and around the world by the First Lady of Rodeo-Miss Rodeo Canada. Today, Miss Rodeo Canada Alumni include Canadian champion horsewomen, community leaders and inductees into the Rodeo Hall of Fame.
The Miss Rodeo Canada organization, is a not for profit organization totally managed by a volunteer board, needs your help.
They have created a Miss Rodeo Canada Fan Club. To join the fan club costs $20. As a fan you will receive a personally autographed eight-by-10 photo of the current Miss Rodeo Canada, quarterly e-mails updates about appearances and other Miss Rodeo Canada news, first opportunity to purchase discounted tickets to Miss Rodeo Canada events. Fans also have a chance to be entered into a draw for you and four friends to join Miss Rodeo Canada at a private dinner host by the Miss Rodeo Canada board.
To join this fan club call Rich Parie 780-955-2440 or write your name, address, telephone and email address on a piece of paper and mail it with your cheque or money order to Miss Rodeo Canada P.O. Box 4240, Edmonton, Alberta T6E 4T2
Best wishes and happy trails!