Ponoka County resident Kayla Dueck was crowned Miss Rimbey Rodeo at the July 12 performance of the rodeo, approximately two months after tossing her cowgirl hat into the ring.
Dueck and her two other competitors, Lindsay Newman and Melissa Sisson stood in the middle of the arena with baited breath while the lesser awards were handed out.
Dueck says when she heard Newman’s name called for the princess position she was happy and thrilled for her friend but when she learned she was the new queen she slipped into a state of excited shock.
“I think it probably sunk in the day after the rodeo,” said Dueck.
“I was so nervous I don’t think I had any thoughts going through my head,” she added.
Now that the dust has settled Dueck says she is ecstatic — and a little overwhelmed — at the idea of representing rodeo and Rimbey for the next year.
When it comes to the sport of rodeo Dueck says she is ready to get rid of any misconceptions people may have. “Rodeo is portrayed in some parts of different countries as a really bad sport. So I want to go out there and say ‘hey, this sport is just like hockey or it’s just like soccer’.”
Dueck wants people to realize those who compete in rodeos do not simply see it as a competition. “You have to have horsemanship. You have to be aware the animal you’re running has a different range of emotions.”
The barrel racer is also looking forward to attending events in different communities and to represent Rimbey to help make people aware of where the small town is.
Sponsored by Holly’s Greenhouse, to whom she is quite thankful, this was Dueck’s first experience with a rodeo pageant competition and she entered after being motivated and supported by woman in the community.
Now she wants to put her best boot forward and be a role model for other young girls who want to wear the crown in their own futures.
“I love having that kind of affect on people,” said Dueck.
Dueck also competed in the ladies barrel racing at the Rimbey Rodeo. “Out of roughly 75 ladies I placed 18th.”
Dueck aspires to one day compete at the Canadian Finals Rodeo. “I’m very excited to try and get my pro permit.”