By Scott Bidroski
An event that has been missing from the schedule at the Sheridan County Fair & Rodeo made a resurgence this year.
The Rodeo Queen and Princess contests had been vacant in years past but thanks to the direction of Robin Scherbarth and Eva Oliver, the event has been revived.
And when the dust settled on the big show, a young lady from Sheridan County took home the crown.
Rushville resident Hadleigh Hoos put together a solid day and collected enough points to receive the honor.
To begin the day, there were three young women competing in the Miss Rodeo Queen Pageant. Those young ladies were Ashton Werth of Hyannis, Neb., Hoos of Rushville, Neb., and Calie Troyer of North Platte, Neb.
The pageant took place on Thursday, July 27 with the interview, speech, and written test being completed at the Methodist Church in Gordon.
The three contestants had to check off those three boxes before heading to the McGinley Arena for a horsemanship contest.
Following the horsemanship portion, the three judges then crunched the numbers to decide who would wear the crown.
Prior to the PRCA Rodeo event on that evening, Hoos was given the honor and took her celebratory ride around McGinley Arena as the new Queen.
“Being crowned was an amazing feeling,” said Hoos.
“I feel like I’ve gone down in history because we have had so many past rodeo queens who are still staples in our community,” she added.
Hoos admits that a Rodeo Queen contest was not always at the top of her radar but she jumped in to experience something new.
“Honestly, going into the pageant, I did not know what is was all about,” said Hoos.
“I started reaching out to past rodeo queens and others who could help me. All of sudden I was receiving study sheets about veterinary horse science, PRCA Rodeo rulebooks, terminology and slang in the rodeo world. It turned into a lot of studying,” she added.
Hoos will now carry the title for the next year and is excited to get out and represent for Sheridan County.
The 2023 Gordon-Rushville High School graduate is daughter of Judd and Brandy Hoos who ranch in Rushville and has plans to attend South Dakota State University beginning here in the next few weeks. She will major in Animal Science.
Hoos will continue her academic studies but plans to have a presence as Miss Rodeo Sheridan County.
“I have to go to at least one other rodeo to represent Sheridan County and also visit two schools as Queen,” said Hoos.
“I’m sure the community will see me around. A trip back for Rushville Fun Days is a possibility. But I have this title for the next year and I’m going to make the most of it!”
The Queen Pageant was one of two new additions to this year’s rodeo.
The Sheridan County Princess contest was also added to the events and took place prior to the Junior Rodeo on Saturday, July 22.
Nine young ladies competed that morning and when the points were tallied, Miss Audrabell Werth from Hyannis, Neb. took home the crown.
Former Miss Rodeo USA and Sheridan County resident Lisa Jamison was the judge for the contest.
For Werth, it was an overall great experience for her and she hopes it continues into the future.
“I’m very happy to be Princess with there being so many years without a contest,” said Werth.
“A lot of the girls that were in the contest, it was their first year. I hope they thought it was fun and keep working for next year and take home the Princess title,” she added.
In what is always an eventful and exciting week during the annual Sheridan County Fair & Rodeo, the revival of the Princess and Queen contests is sure to once again become an integral part of the week’s annual activities.