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Miss Rodeo I llinois 2010 - Katie Chaffin

Miss Rodeo Iowa and the Tri-State Rodeo

After a fun filled weekend in Palestine, Illinois, the very next weekend we loaded the trailer back up but, this time were we heading to Ft. Madison, Iowa, for the Tri-State PRCA Rodeo.  We arrived on Friday, just in time for the Miss Rodeo Iowa and Miss Rodeo Teen Iowa Pageant speech and impromptu question competition.  All of the beautiful young ladies did a wonderful job.  After the competition had ended for the day, we made our way out to the rodeo grounds to prepare for the performance that evening.

As time drew closer to rodeo start time, a huge rain cloud galloped our way.  As soon as it hung over the grounds it opened its door and let loose, raining for the entire performance.  The muddy arena and rain did cancel the grand entry but as they say in show biz, “the show must go on.”  The rodeo performance that evening was nothing less than spectacular.  Also for the mid rodeo entertainment the One Armed Bandit performed his act. If you have not seen this, I recommend that you do.  It is truly a sight to see. 

The next day, Saturday, September 11, was the annual Ft. Madison Parade.  All of the queen’s and queen contestants rode together through it.  After the parade we loaded the horses and made our way back to the fair grounds.  That afternoon was the fashion show and the final day of competition for the Miss Rodeo Iowa and Miss Rodeo Teen Iowa Pageants.  I would like to congratulate Heidi Gansen crowned the 2011 Miss Rodeo Iowa Lady-in-Waiting, and Charity Howk who was crowned 2011 Miss Rodeo Teen Iowa Lady-in-Waiting.  All of the ladies vying for the titles did a great job. 

That evening I was able to participate in the famous Tri-State Rodeo Grand Entry.  I also made a queen’s run and stood in the arena during the National Anthem.  I spent the rest of the evening enjoying the rest of the evening’s performance.  I had a terrific time at the Tri-State Rodeo and will be attending it for many years to come. 

I would like to thank the Miss Rodeo Iowa organization for allowing me to be a small part of their pageant, my family for traveling with me and courting me around for the weekend, my horses for keeping me safe through everything and most importantly the Lord for watching over everyone and everything. 

Bull Bash on the Wabash  ~ While most people spent their Labor Day weekend on vacation, on a lake or sleeping in, I on the other hand spent my time in Palestine, Illinois, for an NFPB Bull Bash.  My weekend started no bit short of exciting when my truck’s magnets were stolen while we were eating supper at Monical’s. 

The next morning, Saturday, was the annual Pancake Breakfast where I greeted people and flipped pancakes.  I also took time to walk through the markets and speak to the vendors.  Later that afternoon, Anne-Marie Martin MIHSR, and Rachel Kelderman Miss National Federation of Professional Bull Riders (MNFPB) and I attended lunch at the Clowns autograph session where we enjoyed hot dogs, kettle corn, and the entertainment of the two bull fighters and Rudy, the Man in the Can.  That evening for the rodeo, I made a queen’s run, carried the Illinois flag and sold 50/50 tickets.  I still have embedded into my head “50/50 raffle, 1 for 1, 6 for 5, my arms length for 10 and my wing span for 20.”  I believe I fell asleep saying that.

Sunday morning, Anne-Marie and I along with our families attended the Cowboy Church Service where we worshipped and praised the Lord.  We spent the afternoon shopping at the businesses on the fair grounds and of course taking a much needed power nap.  That evening we changed the performance of the opening ceremonies a bit.

The theme for the evening was “Tough Enough to Wear Pink.”  We celebrated breast cancer survivors and fighters. There was also a donation bucket that was passed around the grandstands collecting money for the Susan G. Komen foundation.  During intermission there was an advertisement for the Motor Cross that was going to take place on Monday evening.  I still made a queen’s run as well as carried the Illinois Flag.  It was really cool to see the stands full of Rodeo Fans in their pink. 

Monday morning, the last day of Bull Bash on the Wabash, was the annual parade where I got to ride along with Rachel, Anne-Marie, Madison McCormick and two pick up men.  I had such a wonderful time in Palestine.  I would like to thank Lisa and Missy for all of their help, my family and close friends for traveling with me and transporting me, and most importantly the Lord.  Thank you for allowing safe travels and keeping the horses, bulls, cowboys and cowgirls safe.

46th Annual Cattle Auction ~ August 21st, I traveled to Peoria, Illinois, for the 46th Annual Cattle Auction benefiting the Children’s Home Youth Farm Campus.  Miss Illinois High School Rodeo, Anne-Marie Martin and IJRA Princess, Cally Diss, and I helped with the evenings benefit.  We greeted guests, helped with the live auction and signed autographs afterwards.  A few of the popular items in the auction was a guitar autographed by John Cougar Mellencamp, a Montego Bay Trip, and a lot of meat packages.  I had a great time at the benefit and I am so glad that I was able to show my support for the Children’s Home.

Thank you goes to Carly Hagey and Emily Happach who worked to get the queens there, Anne-Marie and Cally for joining me during the evening’s festivities, my family for traveling with me and keeping me company, the Children’s Home for inviting me to their benefit and most importantly the Lord for keeping everyone safe in all of the travels. 

Grayslake ~ Just as I return home from Cheyenne, I washed some clothes, repacked the truck, loaded the horses in the trailer and was off to the Lake County Fair in Grayslake, IL.  This town is home to the only PRCA Rodeo in Illinois.  July 30 and 31, I was able to watch, ride and talk to some of the rodeo fans.  I rode through the grand entry, made queen’s runs, and pushed the calves and steers back to their pen.  During all of the three performances there were multiple talented individuals, teams and animals.  Saturday evening I had the pleasure of watching Kelsea Walker Dodd, Miss Rodeo Illinois 2007, and Donna Irvin, my instructor, run the clover leaf pattern for their chance at winning the money and raising their standing in the Great Lakes Circuit. I would like to thank the Lake county fair for the wonderful hospitality and for bringing the PRCA Rodeo back , Bob and Marty Barnes and the Barnes Rodeo Company for allowing me to ride and help during the rodeo, my horses Tater and CD for keeping me safe and mud free during the performances, my family who kept me company on the trip and most importantly the lord for keeping everyone safe during their travels and the rodeo as well as for the rain which moisten the ground and watered all of the plants and bathed the animals.

Illinois Fulton County Farm Bureau Appearance ~ On Thursday, July 29 I visited one of my favorite sponsors during the Fulton County Fair.  While there I spoke to some of the members, became informed of the Soybean Ambassadors program, and signed autographs for the children and members. The fair also gave me the opportunity to introduce myself in front of the grandstands, where I normally sit.  You see that fair is my hometown fair and it was such an honor for me not only to represent the fair but to represent in front of everyone, my sponsor the Fulton County Farm Bureau who is such a big part of our community.  The rest of the evening I enjoyed the calf scrambles which my cousin, Collin Lascelles, participated in. I would like to thank my sponsor the Fulton County Farm Bureau for allowing me to sit at their booth and for everything that they have done for me throughout my reign, the Fulton County Fair for allowing me to bring only a small taste of rodeo to our county again, and last but not least the lord for guiding us safely to and from all of our destinations.

God Bless, Katie Lea

The Daddy of ‘em All - Out of the chutes and off to the “Daddy of ‘em all”, 114th Cheyenne Frontier Days in Cheyenne, Wyoming. My parents and I set off for the world’s largest outdoor rodeo on Wednesday July 21. We arrived to their home for the week, Windy Hills Bed and Breakfast, late that evening. Thursday, we took a lot of pictures, visited Cheyenne, spent just a little money and ate some wonderful Italian food. That evening we were invited to a BBQ at the home of Ester and Darrel Moore. We enjoyed a wonderful evening of some of my fellow state queen’s stories of their adventures, laughter and small talk. That evening Heather Hall, Miss Rodeo Florida, and I returned to our host home, Gay and Wayne Spencer, we had a grand tour of his office and wall of pictures. Wayne is a radio broadcaster and has broad cast many rodeos all of which he has returned home with a memory. We also had the pleasure of meeting Max, their pride and joy, a gigantic and slobbery St. Bernard. The next morning, Friday the 23rd, we found our way to Terry Bison Ranch for a queen’s luncheon where 52 state, national, local rodeo, county fair, 4-H, and junior rodeo queen’s were present. After a wonderful lunch all the state queens had an amazing time at the Cheyenne Frontier Days (CFD) Old West Museum with the Special Kids group. It is a group for kids in single parent families. We signed autographs, toured the museum, took a ride on a bronc saddle, tried on bull riding equipment and played in the kids section of the museum. In that room the kids played dress up, made beaded bracelets, explored their imagination and the overall favorite made tooled leather bracelets. That evening instead of rocking out at the Kiss concert, all of the state queens, enjoyed a wonderful evening with Greg Hensley, our Dan Post Boot rep. , at Little Bears Restaurant. July 24, Saturday we made our way to the Capital building where our horses were waiting for the annual parade. I had a blast riding through downtown Cheyenne, waving to the crowd and seeing all of the rodeo fans from all over the world. Right after we dismounted we were immediately taken to a VIP tent which provided us with drinks. While there we spoke to the CFD Committee and thanked them for allowing us to share the experience with them. After a cool beverage we hiked back to our vehicles and loaded up to head to the rodeo grounds to get ready for the first performance of the CFD Rodeo. Thank you to Pendleton for allowing us into your VIP tent for lunch and drinks throughout the day. When lunch had settled, we walked to the barn to get our horses to warm them up before we made our first of two famous CFD flybys, where we literally flyby the crowd so fast that you have to triple the amount of bobby pins in your hat, lose your eyebrows in the brim, and wear water proof makeup because the speed of the Vold horses will make your eyes water. When the flybys, were all said and done we were taken to the Media room where four girls interviewed with radio announcer, Wayne Spencer. All the while the rest of us enjoyed watching the rodeo. When the interviews were finished we took time to walk through the sponsor boxes signing autographs, taking pictures, and thanking them for all of their support. The rest of the performance was ours to shop, eat, and or watch the rodeo until it was time for the autograph session. We only had a few minutes to change clothes and head out to dinner before the Last Rodeo tour of Brooks and Dunn concert with opening act The Band Perry. On sponsor appreciation day, Sunday July 25, Erin Heffron, Miss Rodeo Wyoming, Heather and I spent our morning praising the lord with music by Suzie McEntire (Reba’s sister). After giving our blessings for the day, we ate lunch and saddled up for the 2nd and final flyby of CFD. After my radio interview, I and three other queens had the opportunity to stand behind the chutes and watch the rodeo. After that we that we walked through the rest of the sponsor boxes and then signed autographs after the rodeo. For dinner we all gathered at Arlene Kingsinger’s house for a Taco John’s Party and a tour of her museum that is in the basement of her house. For the rest of the evening we attended the Aaron Tippin and Neal McCoy concert. My last day in Cheyenne ended with a bang. The 1st pancake breakfast started that morning. Everyone who was there for the rodeo or just visiting enjoyed a delicious breakfast. While that I flipped pancakes, introduced myself, posed for pictures and signed tons of autographs. I even signed one to a lady from Australia. We were quickly whisked away to a Cowgirls of the West Brunch. We all enjoyed a delicious meal of steak and eggs. Also going on during the brunch was a silent auction, a new honorary member was inducted, there was a fashion show put on by Dillard’s. I had such a wonderful time in Cheyenne and would recommend that rodeo to anyone because it is truly a site to see. After all it is the “Daddy of ‘em All.” I would like to thank my parents for traveling with me, the CFD general committee for allowing me to come, Arlene Kinsinger and Ester Moore for coordinating all of our events and making sure that we felt like queens, Gay, Wayne, and Max Spencer for your wonderful hospitality, Heather Hall, Miss Rodeo Florida, for rooming with me for the week, Pat for sponsoring me at the brunch, Harry Vold’s Quarter Horses who I rode in the parade and flybys and most of all god who kept all of us safe during our travels. If I have forgotten anyone, I truly apologize. Thank you everyone who helped make this rodeo a trip of a life time.

May God Bless and keep you. Katie Lea Chaffin

NFPB Comes to Rushville

Let’s Rodeo in Rushville, Illinois! Friday evening July 2, I attended the National Federation of Professional Bull Riders (NFPB) during the Schuyler County Fair.  At the performance I was introduced into the arena and then I carried the flag for the Star Spangled Banner.  The rest of the evening I signed autographs, spoke to the fans and of course watched the Bull Riding. 

I would like to thank the Schuyler County Fair Board for allowing me to attend the rodeo and participate in their grand stand activities, the rodeo stock contractor for allowing me to be a part of such an amazing sport and of course God for keeping my family, my horse, and my friends safe through all of our travels and for protecting the cowboys from danger. 

God Bless, Katie Lea Chaffin

Piatt County Trail Blazers 56th Annual Rodeo ~ It’s time to saddle up and ride to the Piatt County Trail Blazers 56th annual rodeo in Monticello, Illinois.  This IPRA rodeo was held June 24 through the 26.  I was able to attend the Friday and Saturday performances. 

Friday evening, I was blessed with the opportunity to be the Honorary Pivot Setter for the grand entry along side of the 2010 Trail Blazers Queen, Abbie McCabe, as well as former queens and contestants.  I also had the opportunity to make a queen’s run during the sponsor flag runs.  The rest of the evening I enjoyed the company of my mom as we stood behind the shoots and watched the rest of the rodeo.  We were also able to watch Kelsea Walker Dodd, Miss Rodeo Illinois 2007, take her turn around the barrels.

Saturday morning didn’t start out as planned, when the Clown Greek saw me with my rollers in my hair and no makeup on my face.  Go figure the only person who would see me would be the clown, but no worries he got quite a few wise cracks in throughout the day.   It’s ok Greek you just remember that I saw you without your make up too.

The activity that morning was the parade through downtown Monticello.  After visiting with the people in the crowd as I rode by we loaded the trailer back up and headed over to Rick Ridings, a ford dealer who was a major sponsor for the weekend, where I signed autographs during the kids and clowns lunch.  I enjoyed a free hotdog meal as well as ice cream and a few laughs as I sat right beside the clown.  Oh, did I mention that I also had the opportunity to judge the Little Miss and Mr. Rodeo Contest.  The children were all so cute I had a very hard time picking just one.  Congratulations to the winners!

After lunch, it was off to take a nap in the cool, shady…..I’m just kidding that afternoon the heat index rose well above 100 degrees and there was no escaping it until later that evening when the sun started to go down as the rodeo started.  I did the same thing for the grand entry that evening as well as carried a sponsor flag. 

I had a wonderful time at the rodeo!  I would like to thank the Trail Blazers Saddle Club for allowing me to participate in their annual tradition, the Blacker family for their wonderful hospitality and friendship, the current and former Trail Blazers Queens, for allowing me to stand and ride next to you, it was an honor, and last but not least God, thank you, for keeping my mom, my horse and I safe through our travels and for keeping all of the cowboys and cowgirls safe from harm.

God Bless, Katie Lea Chaffin

125th Silver Spurs Rodeo

June 4th, I set off for Orlando, Florida, to attend the 125th Silver Spurs Rodeo in Kissimmee.  My day didn’t start off as smoothly as I had planned.  Somehow my suitcase had gained 5 lbs. overnight, which meant that I was over the weight limit.  After that catastrophe I was finally on my way to the airport.  Shockingly enough I couldn’t find the Peoria Airport, but no worries I still made my flight heading to Chicago which by the way was delayed 30 minutes on the run way.  After we safely landed at the O’ hare Airport I had only a short 10 minutes to find my next gate and then it was off to sunny Orlando.  Or so I thought.

Apparently I did not fill my suitcase full enough because somehow a rain storm had managed to sneak in and escape right as we were landing in Florida because when we hit the ground it was raining.  Thank you Illinois!

After waiting on my ride Heather Hall, Miss Rodeo Florida, who might I mention fell asleep in the parking lot while waiting for me to arrive, we loaded the truck and set off to meet Sara Dixon and her dad so that we could get ready for dinner that evening that was held on the arena floor.  In preparation for supper a storm blew through and knocked out the power.  Just my luck.  Ha-ha.  But we did make it to dinner in plenty of time.

Saturday morning, June 5th, we through on our bathing suits and sunscreen and enjoyed a relaxing morning on Melbourne Beach, before the first rodeo performance that night.  At the performance, I was able to meet the Silver Spurs Queen, Erica Lassiter, and her court as well as the Little Miss Silver Spurs Maddie Munns and her court.  I was also blessed to meet Miss Teen Rodeo Florida, Kricket Wise, who with us at Heather’s house. I also had to opportunity to ride with Miss High School Rodeo Florida, Keri Sheffield.  That evening I was able to make a queen’s run in the opening ceremonies.  The rest of the evening I enjoyed the performance and signed so many autographs that I completely ran out.

The next morning, Sunday June 6th, we got up early to attend the cowboy church ceremony.  After rejoicing and praising our Lord we spent the afternoon shopping at the vendors and preparing for the 2 o’clock performance where I was introduced as I made another queen’s run.  My favorite part of the evening was having the opportunity to watch the world Champion Barrel Racer, Brittany Pozzi run the pattern and walk away with the fastest time of the evening.  After the performance we signed more autographs and took just a few pictures.  For the rest of the evening we enjoyed pizza, cheesy bread, southern sweet tea and a movie.

I would like to thank Heather Hall, Miss Rodeo Florida, and her family for opening up their home to me, Laura Kessler, Florida National Director, for making it possible for me to attend the 125th Silver Spurs Rodeo.  The Silver Spurs court for allowing me to use their horse for my queen’s run and most importantly the Lord for keeping me safe through all of my travels.

God Bless, Katie Lea Chaffin

Western Day

Tuesday, May 25th, I was invited to help with Western Day at the Astoria Grade School.  I was in charge of playing with the kids and talking to them about rodeo and horses during their recess.  After playing only 3 games of tag I was all tuckered out and decided that I’d just watch them exert their energy while I stored some of mine.  I was able to talk to some very polite and intelligent children.  I also had the opportunity to watch the youngsters perform their two line dances that they learned during one of their sessions and take a picture with the winning cow pie throwing team.  After everything was over and I was leaving the building I received a line of students in front of me that seemed to be never ending that wanted an autograph picture.  It was so nice to do something so close to home and in a community where I grew up in.  I would like to thank the Astoria Grade School Teachers for allowing me to come.

Dodge National Circuit Finals Rodeo ~ My first trip to Pocatello, Idaho and the Dodge National Circuit Finals was an unbelievable experience.  My trip didn’t start so smooth when my 7:45 am flight was delayed till 1 pm due to engine trouble.  So I arrived 6 hours late to Pocatello getting me to the kick off party right as the State Queens were starting to be introduced.  The kick off party was filled with dancing, singing picture taking and even a golfing competition into the pool. 

On Wednesday, we started off our morning at the Holt Arena, practicing for the grand entry and sponsor flag runs.  During the practice we received Fat Boys (ice cream sandwiches) made by Measha Gittins, Miss Rodeo Idaho.   We also received DNCFR t-shirts and personalized flag boots made by Shane Passey of Lone Wolf Boot and Saddle Repair in Idaho.   After practice, a few of us headed to the Pocatello Care Center.  It was a lot of fun getting to talk to and sign autographs for the patients and staff.  While there we also got to take a tour of the flight deck and Life Flight helicopter and take pictures in it.

The first performance of the DNCFR started that night, I didn’t carry a flag that night so I walked around with Heather Hall (Miss Rodeo Florida) and Jordanne Blair (Miss Rodeo Iowa) and sold programs and signed autographs for the fans.  I was also able to help with the mutton busting that evening. 

On Thursday our group made appearances at a few schools, went shopping a few local western stores and took Miss Rodeo Florida up in the mountains to play in the snow.  I had a blast with Jordanne, Heather, Erin (Miss Rodeo Missouri) and Fred (our driver) throwing snowballs and taking pictures in the snow.  That afternoon all of the Royalty took a trip over to the Cowboy Expo and Trade Show to do a little shopping and sign more autographs. 

Thursday evening was Tough Enough to Wear Pink Night at the Rodeo.  I sold programs, signed autographs and helped with the mutton busting again that night.  But those were not the only jobs that I had that evening.  At a few of the performances a few of us queens were asked to watch a young man named Gator Goodrich, while his father Brad Goodrich competed in the Tie Down Roping.  Gator sat with us and signed a few autographs and taught us some awesome new dance moves. On Friday, we visited and spoke to the nursing home and then signed autographs at the credit union.  That evening and Saturday evening, I carried sponsor flags throughout the rodeo. 

Saturday morning I had the opportunity to help with my very first special needs rodeo.  I was paired with Seth who was an amazing young man.  We rode a bull, a retired bucking bronc, got to pet a miniature horse, and he learned to rope which by the way was his favorite part.  That rodeo was my favorite part of the whole trip and it made everything worthwhile to see the smile on all of their faces and to see some of the more shy kids come out of their shell and laugh and talk and interact with the animals.  There was a Saturday afternoon performance and then that evening was the final go around where only the top eight people were allowed to compete and then the final four came back to compete for the DNCFR championship buckle.  From the Great Lakes Circuit Josh Shackleford in Bareback Riding, Kyle Whitaker in Steer Wrestling, Tammie Whyte in Barrel Racing and Sunshine Schwartz in Bull Riding made it to the final eight. I am proud to say that I made it back to Illinois Sunday evening without any delays, engine trouble or any other problems. 

The DNCFR was an amazing experience. I would like to thank Carma for putting up with all of us queens, putting everything together, scheduling events for all of us and giving me the opportunity of a life time to attend the DNCFR.  Also to the committee members, drivers and hostesses you were all awesome.  I had an amazing week and none of it would have been possible without all of your help and dedication.  I would especially like to thank our driver, Fred, who really did treat all of us like royalty.  He opened and closed all of the doors for us, picked us up at the front door every morning and knew the true way to our hearts with candy and water everyday which he kept supplied in the van.  Thank you all so much again. This trip was definitely one of the biggest highlights of my reign.


2010 Illinois Horse Fair

The 2010 Illinois Horse Fair was held March 5th-7th at the Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield where I spent the weekend walking around to different booths talking to different businesses, shopping, attending clinics and looking at the stallion alley. My horse, Tater, had the opportunity to be rode by Julie Goodnight in a few of her clinics and demonstrations.  I helped Lisa Boeding, Miss Rodeo Illinois pageant director, do a clinic on Rodeo Royalty for young ladies.  I also had the opportunity to make an appearance during the barrel clinic, instructed by Polly Hagey, which was sponsored by the Miss Rodeo Illinois Association.  My favorite part of the weekend was being asked to present the American Flag and be in the grand finale of the Tommy Turvey Show.  It was a real honor.  Thank you to everyone. 


CowGirl Royalty Clinic--Energy, beauty, energy, speaking, energy, nutrition, Energy! In attendance to the clinic with me were Caitlin Robb, Miss Mercer County who is also a BHC student from New Windsor; and high school rodeo members Lakken Troxell of Loami, and Anne Marie Martin of Effingham, and Jacy VanDyke, Miss Illinois High School Rodeo, of Pekin who audited. The young ladies and I enjoyed a weekend full of speech and stage presence, interviews, impromptu questions, fitness and nutrition, make-up and beauty, horsemanship, flag carrying and presentation, and the queen’s wave. We also had an etiquette lesson on a night out at a restaurant. After a long informational and successful weekend we ended the clinic with a final horsemanship, flag presentation and queen’s wave critique.

I would like to thank Judy for spending a weekend in Illinois educating and helping us, Black Hawk College for allowing us to use their facilities and horses, the Miss Rodeo Illinois Association for preparing and helping at the clinic, and the parents and young ladies who attended the clinic, without you it would not have been the huge success that it was.  Thank you! 


Miss Rodeo Iowa 2010 Crowning

On January 23, my parents, Mike and Cindy, and I took off for Lake City, Iowa. When we arrived the town looked like a snow and ice war zone. There were limbs, trees, power lines and telephone poles down everywhere. In fact, due to the snow and ice the town did not receive power back till the day before Jordanne Blair, Miss Rodeo Iowa’s crowning event.

When we arrived at the town hall, I squeezed into the bathroom amongst the other royalty to get ready for the night. After looking at the live and silent auction items and loving on the adorable puppy that was to be auctioned off, I decided to take my chance on a few silent auction items. I ended up with a stool that had a barrel racer burned into the top. I was very excited.

Jordanne served a delicious meal of pork loin, green beans, and a baked potato. We were graced by listening to Jordanne’s speech she gave during her pageant while we enjoyed our meal. While we were preparing for the live auction, a Mr. Rodeo Iowa King was crowned. I was unable to stay till the end of the coronation due to our very long drive home but I did get to model a few items before I left. I had a great time and wish Jordanne the best of luck throughout the year and in Las Vegas.

Bulls and Broncs Rodeo  

On Friday, Jan. 22, I attended the Bulls and Broncs Rodeo in Moline, IL. I did a live interview with Channel 8 News as sponsor of the rodeo. I was in the arena and interacted with the fans while signing autographs for the pre-rodeo show. I enjoyed the rodeo and was able to congratulate the Champions.

Now doing interviews and signing autographs was not the only thing I took part in. I also got to hold the tape for the beautiful trick riding ladies from Texas and I was very blessed to get to carry the National Guard Flag into the arena while being announced. I had a wonderful time and would like to thank the Three Hills Rodeo Company for inviting and being so kind and generous.

National Western Stock Show and Rodeo  ~  Mile high rendezvous! Well who would of thought that a ten and a half hour drive to Denver, a week living with a family I had never met and three days of begging at the market would be such a shocking, surprising and unbelievable time?

On January 13th, Jordanne Blair, Miss Rodeo Iowa, and I loaded our totes, yes I said totes (you have to see the pictures), into the back of Don and Shirley Staver’s truck. Throughout the ten and a half hour hike, we spent the time telling stories, listening to Don tell stories about his wife, and snoozing for hours.

We met Rustin and Laurie, the family who we’d be living with for a week, their two children Chloe, a blue heeler Aussie mix, and Doogan, a schnauzer, and then it was off to bed. On the 14th, I, Jordanne, Don and Shirley piled back in the truck and left for an adventurous day. We toured downtown Denver, shopped in the Rockmount Ranch Wear Manufacturing Company, got lost trying to find the Roper Warehouse, took a look at Miss Rodeo Colorado 2009’s wardrobe, and chowed down at a Chinese restaurant with friends and family of the Staver’s. Oh, I have mention that Jordanne’s GPS got us lost off-roading through mud (again you have to see the pictures) and back in town throughout the day but, we always made it to our destination.

Friday, Sunday and Monday was our turn to try our hand at begging at the market and I’d say that we did pretty well. We talked to the Dan Post Boot Company, Wrangler, Roper, Hat Nanny, Montana Silversmith, Skully, Kippy’s, Weaver, Nocoma, Kensington, Petrol, and many other businesses and companies. One of the highlights at the market was getting to model handmade fur coats from Greece made by Andreas Tsagas. Another exciting event was when Jordanne and I were asked to sit at the Tandy Leather Booth and sign autograph sheets Sunday and Monday. Friday night we attended the very entertaining fashion show where companies had models dancing and wearing their new lines.

On Saturday, we were at all three performances of the Rodeo. We signed autographs, carried sponsor flags, helped with mutton busting, made appearances on foot in the arena and passed out sponsor prizes to the crowd. I had an amazing time and it was great to meet all of the other state queens and interact with them during the rodeo and behind the scenes.

I had a terrific time in Denver and would like to thank Don and Shirley, Rustin and Laurie, Jordanne and my family for all of your support, help and all the laughs. Also to Rebecca Kloker, thank you so much for letting me borrow your chaps. It means a lot to have the former 2009 queen so supportive of my reign.

Brand New Beginning  

My Coronation Celebration and Crowning Moment was held on Jan. 2, 2010, at VIT High School in Table Grove, Ill. It was a fun filled evening full of live entertainment, delicious home cooked meal, crowning moment, kiddy carnival and a silent and live auction. I would like to thank my community, family, and friends for such a wonderful turnout. The Miss Rodeo Coronation was a huge success. Thank you to the fundraiser committee for all your hard work:  Tina Althiser, Angela Blickenstaff, Nancy Buswell, Kathy Cox, Brandi Hood, Durinda Hulett, Tina Kessler, Kelly Lascelles, Patricia Lascelles, Laurie Martin, Laurie Robertson, Kay Weaver, and Kim Westlake. I could not have done it without you. VIT Girls Scouts Junior and Cadet’s thanks for all your work with the kiddy carnival and the two children, Kianna Bowers and Garret Hulett who donated their pennies to me it was extremely sweet. Thank you, Astoria FFA and Student Council for your help with the setup, cleanup and serving. Thank you to my church family for your prayers and food. Thank you to all the individuals and businesses who donated items for the live and silent auctions. Staisha Dean and Wes Jones, thank you for your wonderful singing.  Thank you to Kelsea Walker-Dodd for being the master of ceremonies.  Thank you Rebecca and Floyd Melvin for donating back the 50-50 money. Rebecca Kloker and family, thank you for all of your support and guidance, it has been a blessing to get to know you. I have big shoes to fill. I am truly blessed to live in a community I am so proud to be a part of. I look forward to representing my community throughout Illinois and the United States. I was also very grateful to have the company and help of rodeo and county fair queen visiting royalty.  In attendance were Jordanne Blair, Miss Rodeo Iowa 2010; Caitlyn Welker, Miss Fulton County Fair 2009; Caitlin Robb, Miss Mercer County Fair 2009; Jacy VanDyke, Miss Illinois High School Rodeo 2009-2010; and Cassandra Spivey, Miss New Windsor Fair & Rodeo Queen 2009.  Thank you to all of the present and past queens who attended and helped with the auction.   I would like to thank the following businesses and individuals who made donated items and contributed to my fund raiser: Alco Discount Store, Havana; Anderson Bean Boot Co.; Anthony Roberts Chiropractic; Arnold Bros. Heating & Cooling; Astoria FFA; Astoria Student Council; Back in the Saddle; Bear Paw Promotions & Sportswear; Briney’s Bird Farm – Milt & Ginger Spencer; C & L Tack & Farrier Service; Cargill; Central Life Sciences; Charlie 1 Horse Hats; Charmar Land & Cattle Co.; Circle H Ranch; Coleman Co.; Country Companies – Steve Butler; Dan Post Boot Co.; Equilite; Espree Animal Products; Gifts from the Heart – Jennifer Lehman; Glitz & Glam; Hardee’s, Havana; Horse Creek Outfitters; Hawthorne Products; J.D. Mullen Co., Inc.; Jarden Consumer Solutions; Kinetic Technologies; Kracker’s Corner; Larry Thomas Lawn Mower Repair; Leather CPR; McLaughlin’s Western Store; Merial Limited; Miller Tack & Feed; Montana Silver Smith; Napa, Havana; Never Ending Story; No Place Like Home; Pard’s Western Store; Pampered Chef – Sara Miller; Pizza Hut, Kewanee; Power Service Inc.; Reinsman; Select the Best; Silver Lining Herbs; Smith Brothers; Special Occassions; Tractor Supply Co.; Troxel LLC ; Time & Time Again; Timmerman’s; Tracy Pratt Woodworking; Tree of Life ; Two Rivers FS; Valley Vet Supply; VIT Girl Scouts; Wal-Mart, Macomb; Weaver Leather; Wolter’s Drug Store; Fulton Co. 4-H Federation; Jeff & Tina Althiser; Eldon & Barb Baker; Donna & Jerry Bartlett; Gordon Bauer; Gale & Anne Beekman; David & Debbie Berry;  Jordanne Blair, Miss Rodeo Iowa; Bobby & Angela Blickenstaff & family; Wanda Blodgett; Janis Blout; Lisa Boeding; Gary & Margaret Bopp; Kianna Bowers; Shawn & Donna Bradford; Vernal & Mildred Brown ; Jerry & Patti Bubb; John Burgard & family; George & Elizabeth Burton; George & Nancy Buswell; Paula Buswell; Sharon Camarillo; Jac Carr; Jim & Cindy Cassidy; Mike & Cindy Chaffin & family; Bob & Karen Chatterton; Doug & Becky Chenoweth; Dean & Sandy Chipman; Patricia Clayton ; Sandra Coulter; Jeanette Coyle & family; Rosemary Cooper; Barb Cowin; Maurice & Kathy Cox; Devin Demott; Mackenzie Demott; Mike & Robin DeMott & family; Don & Carol Derry; Nicole Dobbs; Mike & Joyce Dyche; Kevin & Marcy Easley; Corey & Terri Ingles; Paul & Deyonne Farr; Randy & Sue Farr; Richard & Willa Fisher; Allen & Dessie Forsythe; James France & family; Tim Graham; Curt & Polly Hagey & family; Donald & Donna Haley; Phil Heaton; Greg & Carrie Hollenback & family; Don & Brandi Hood & family; Marty & Durinda Hulett & family; Garret Hulett; Mark & Tina Kessler & family; Paul & Karen Kieser & family; Norm & Jean Kloker & Family; Rebecca Kloker; Kay Knuppel; Doug & Kim Krukewitt & family; Jessica Lane; Jim & Kelly Lascelles & family; Clifford Still; Dorthy Lascelles; Charles & Patricia Lascelles & family; Dale & Addie Lascelles; Lyle Lascelles; John & Kris Lascelles & family; Kenny & Peggy Lascelles; Melvin & Vera Lascelles; Steve & Donna Lascelles & family; Vernon & Marla Lascelles; Sue Lindsey; Larry & Roberta McCormick; Marilyn Madison; John & Kathy Marshall; Eric & Laurie Martin; Floyd & Rebecca Melvin; Brett Miller; Gary & Alice Miller; Gene & Carol Miller; Wanda Myers; Jack & Linda Myers; Judy Ogden; Jennifer Onken & family; Tony & Gwen Paschall & family; Darrel & Debra Pierce; Joe Pittman; Brian & Lonna Porter & family; Sam & Linda Porter; Russel & Glenna Prather; Tracy & Glenda Pratt & family; Wanda Ray; Caitlin Robb, Miss Mercer County Fair 2009; Dee & Russ Robb; Dale & Shirley Roberts; Cindy Schaffer; Geraldine Schmidt; Rachel Schumaker; Eric Schwegler & Amber Green; Ron Settles; Robert & Norma Shawgo; Ernie Shortness; Barbara Simpson; Bud & Doris Sisson;  Jason & Jennifer Spencer; Cassandra Spivey, New Windsor Fair & Rodeo Queen; Cheryle & Jay Spivey; Sue Stafford; Catherine Stambaugh; Randy Stambaugh; Senator John Sullivan; Lisa Sullivan; Don & Clara Kay Thompson; Lisa Tunney; John & Melba Upton; Darlene Urish; Tim & Debbie Urish & family; Jim Uteg; Jacy VanDyke, Miss Illinois High School Rodeo Queen; Janet & Kevin VanDyke; Harold & Betty Vaughn; Brian & Kathy Waller; TJ & Kelsea (Walker) Dodd; Steve & Kay Weaver; Jim & Nancy Webb; Keith Webb; Troy & Kim Westlake; Fred & Marla Wiemer; Glenn & Rita Wilcoxen; and Jean Young.

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