The 2012 rodeo season has come to an end and Williams Lake Stampede Royalty got to wrap it up with the Canadian Finals Rodeo in Edmonton, Alberta.
We started with my mom and I, Princess Terris Billyboy, taking the long drive through beautiful British Columbia.
Arriving in Edmonton late Friday night, we then spent the entire day Saturday in West Edmonton Mall.
Sunday, Nov. 4 we took part in cheering on the 2013 Miss Rodeo Canada contestants during the horsemanship competition.
This year’s contestants were Nicole Schlaak, Miss Okotoks; Sarah Michel, Miss Grand Prairie Stampede; and Gillian Shields, Miss Rodeo Airdrie.
Monday, Nov. 5 Farm Fair International officially opened and what an amazing adventure that was.
There were so many vendors in one location selling everything from boots and boot polish to western wear and décor, as well as, horse trailers and living quarters. Across from Farm Fair in the same building, the Expo Center held the Ranch Rodeo. The Ranch Rodeo has similar events to the Ranch Challenge which is held in Williams Lake during Stampede.
A huge thank-you to the Wine Glass Ranch for donating tickets to us so we could watch and cheer on local teams from the Cariboo.
Tuesday afternoon the contestants running for Miss Rodeo Canada had their public speaking event.
The three contestants presented their prepared speeches, read an article and answered an impromptu question.
Later in the evening the girls took part in a fashion show, modeling clothes from Lammle’s and Women’s Fashions.
For part of the fashion show the girls got to use their own clothes and each contestant modelled their beautiful western dresses.
The finals set of clothes the girls modelled was their pajamas, where we got to see onezies, stick ponies and hair rollers falling out of their hair.
Right after the fashion show we were off to the Ranch Challenge to watch the final round where they chose the winning ranches.
Wednesday morning we woke up to copious amounts of snow. My cowboy boots did not work well with this particular weather, I was spinning out on my own two feet! We used this day to explore the shopping Edmonton had to offer other than the West Edmonton Mall.
With determination and help for balance, both my cowboy boots and I made it.
To finish the day the Canadian Finals Rodeo had their first performance by introducing all the competitors in grand entry and Dean Brody opening with a few songs.
I was blown away with the amazing performance put on by the Cowboys and Cowgirls. There were lights and fireworks throughout the whole show and I could not look away, because I did not want to miss a thing.
My favourite part of this entire trip was Thursday morning when I was invited to represent Williams Lake in the Rodeo Magic.
This event is held in the CFR arena where rodeo royalty and the CFR contestants show special needs children the events of rodeo. Everyone was paired up with a child. They could then take part in horseback riding, wagon rides, barrel racing, horse shoe toss, roping a bale of hay and riding the bucking barrel. Some even got their face painted; most children and cowboys got a “Cowboy Moustache.” I was honoured to take part in this event and I hope next year’s royalty will be invited back to participate in such an amazing and rewarding experience.
At this point I would like to take the time to thank the Williams Lake Stampede Association, the City of Williams Lake and all our sponsors who made our trip to Edmonton and all our other rodeos we attended possible.
It has all been an experience of a life time and I would do it all again in a heartbeat. And I can’t forget the biggest thank you to all the chaperones we have had, my mom Brigette, my grandma Pat, Alexis’ parents Silvia and Calvin, who treat me like I’m their own daughter, and the lady that coordinates it all, Jamie.
We couldn’t do it without any one of you.