We are a volunteer board made up of women from the Sheridan area. Each of us have a western life-style background in one or more areas, such as agriculture, ranching, rodeoing, horsemanship, veterinary medicine, or rodeo queening. We strive to facilitate a strong and high quality rodeo royalty competition, as well as take on the roll of mentoring the young ladies as they represent Sheridan County, Sheridan WYO Rodeo, and their western heritage. We stand firm in our belief that rodeo royalty should uphold high moral standards and conduct, as they are in the public eye. The reigning royalty not only make rodeo appearances, but are involved in the community through public speaking in regards to the sport of rodeo, what it takes to be a rodeo queen, and what Sheridan County has to offer, emphasizing the importance of setting goals in life and working hard to achieve them and where they can take you. In addition, the royalty volunteer their time doing public service for fundraisers and other charity and youth organizations around the community, which have included, Joey's Fly Fishing Foundation, CHAPS, RENEW, Community Christmas Dinner, Toys For Tots, Rocky Mountain Elks Foundation, Friends of the Library, Pheasants Forever, and the Wild Turkey Federation.
Our goal is to ensure that being rodeo royalty is a fun and rewarding experience, with many opportunities for educational and personal growth, for those involved. We would like to see our Royalty utilized in the community and throughout the state. The Sheridan WYO Rodeo Royalty has a lot to offer the community in the way of public service at different functions, promoting what the county has to offer, preserving our western heritage, and being a positive role model for the public.
We also assist the reigning queen so she can be prepared for the Miss Rodeo Wyoming pageant. We hold Rodeo Queen Clinics to aid young ladies in preparing for this type of competition. In our clinics we strive to educate girls not only on horsemanship and rodeo knowledge, but also on what it takes to succeed in life, public speaking skills, how to be a positive role model, and what is expected of them as an ambassador of Sheridan WYO Rodeo and the sport of Rodeo. You know you have made a difference in one’s life when a shy little girl walks into the first day of our rodeo queen clinic. She has poor speaking skills and little self-confidence, but behind those timid eyes is a sparkle that is waiting to be revealed. When the day is over, this little girl is walking with poise, speaking with confidence, has a goal in mind, and the knowledge to achieve it.
Watching her own daughter become more confident and successful throughout the assistance of the program, board member, Lois Bass, says, "I am a firm believer that the program is designed to help young women expand their horizons becoming more confident, able to present themselves in a professional manner, expand their equine/rodeo knowledge, improve their horsemanship, and further their education. Being a queen mom, led to understanding the importance of encouraging and assisting the young girls as they transform into young women, understanding we all have different learning curves along the way."
The SWRQB look forward to the future, knowing Sheridan County cowgirls possess much potential for success in competing for Miss Rodeo Wyoming.
The Sheridan WYO Rodeo (SWR) first had a queen in 1936, Gladys Accola. Her court consisted of a Lady in Waiting, Virginia Kerr, and a Flag Bearer, Joan Churchill. Other members of the court were two Indian “Princesses”; Myrtle Big Man from the Crow Tribe and Josephine Stands-in-the-Timber of the Cheyenne Tribe.
Over the next forty-four years, the SWR Queen program produced some amazing and lovely young ladies to represent SWR as queen and attending royalty. Unfortunately, the program was, at times, subject to public criticism for a variety of reasons.
For instance, at one time the queen was selected by a secret committee and political considerations were more important than horsemanship. In fact, one year the queen selectee could not ride and had to be given riding lessons to get through the rodeo.
At another time, it was difficult to find ladies to apply for the contest, and the SWR board had to beat the bushes to find enough contestants.As popular as the queen program was to most of the public, and as much good as it did for the girls who competed, the workload became too onerous for the Rodeo Board and the abandoned it in 1979. A former SWR Queen ran the program for one more year to produce the 1980 SWR Queen, Teri Lilley.
In 2001 Kerri Parr and Elaine Hilman was handed the Sheridan County Rodeo Queen program with a goal in mind to bring back the Sheridan WYO Rodeo Queen program. In 2008, a new SWR Queen program was formed from the Sheridan County Rodeo Queen Board, which requested that their program be placed under the auspices of the Sheridan WYO Rodeo. Both the County Rodeo Board and the WYO Rodeo Board agreed to the change and a SWR Queen was crowned for the first time in twenty-seven years. The SWR Queen Program has assisted in developing four young ladies from the Sheridan area to attain their goal as Miss Rodeo Wyoming.
The first was Maggie Engels, Sheridan County Rodeo 2004 and Miss Rodeo Wyoming 2005. However, Allie Bass was the first Sheridan WYO Rodeo Queen to be crowned Miss Rodeo Wyoming in 2009, following was Kimberly Kuhn, Miss Rodeo Wyoming 2012. Bringing the jade crown back to Sheridan, Hannah Ostheimer, Miss Rodeo Wyoming 2019.
The SWR Queen Board is dedicated to bringing more recognition to rodeo royalty and the sport of rodeo.
Sheridan WYO Rodeo Queen Board
WYO Rodeo Board Liaison: Marva Craft
WYO Wrangler Liaisons: Liz Kinkaid, & Cindy Wolf