The Miss Rodeo Canada competition was one of poise, determination and execution.
For two of these ladies, it was an experience they will undoubtedly never forget.
Alicia Erickson of Trochu was crowned Miss Ponoka Stampede earlier this year. Sage Nelson of Youngstown was crowned Hanna Pro Rodeo Queen in 2017. Erickson was the Hanna Pro Rodeo Queen who handed the title down to Nelson before she pursued other titles.
In total, six competitors from across Canada vied for the title by going through a number of tasks including public speaking, personal interviews, rodeo knowledge, a back number ceremony where they escorted cowboys onto stage, horsemanship and a fashion show which were evaluated by judges.
They were also judged on appearance, personality and interactions with sponsors and other people.
“It was life changing,” began Nelson. “I’ve had so many opportunities already and the competition has just ended.”
Erickson added, “I want to say that I learned a lot about myself as well as my relationship with the other girls. Going into a competition, you think ‘Oh, who’s going to be the first one I fight with?’ or there are all these girls grabbing for the same crown and we are all wanting the same thing. But we all got along so well and we thrived off of each other’s energy throughout the whole week. That is what made it so memorable.”
Although neither won the queen title, Erickson made first runner-up, won the Horsemanship category and Social Media category while Nelson won Congeniality for overall friendliest among competitors.
In an interview with the ECA Review, Erickson commented “I’m really proud of myself for the way I’ve handled myself and that I know that this wasn’t my day but there is something else out there and helping youth in a different way.
“Somewhere else, someone else needs us so it’s okay,” said Erickson through teary eyes after the announcement as emotions came
to the forefront.
“I totally agree with Alicia in that I’ve learned a lot about myself and I’m so happy that I got to spend it with these girls. It’s been really, really life changing,” said Nelson.
Horsemanship was a favourite category shared by the two. They had the opportunity to ride reiners which are a type of discipline among horses. They did a number of slide and stops, spins, rolls and lead changes to show off their skills.
Jaden Holle, Claresholm CBI Queen, won this year’s Miss Rodeo Canada 2019 competition.
Miss Rodeo Canada is an ambassador for the sport of rodeo where she travels the world to various events and other rodeos presenting Canadian rodeo culture to these areas.