By Craig Marx, Editor
Katelin Bradley is patiently waiting for her coronation ceremony at North Star Lanes on January 6th to begin. The event comes as a significant milestone for the recently-graduated, 22-year old equestrian enthusiast, where she will officially don the title of Miss Rodeo Wisconsin.
Bradley, originally from Crandon but now living in Antigo, competed in the Miss Rodeo Wisconsin Pageant Association’s four-day long event this past June, where she won all four judges’ categories to claim the crowning title. Contestants are judged based on personality, appearance, horsemanship, and knowledge.
The new Miss Rodeo 2017 has been involved with horses and the western lifestyle nearly her entire life.
“I’ve been riding since before I could walk and received my first pony when I was three. I was five-years old when I showed my horse,” Bradley recalled. “When I was in college, I knew I wanted to get into rodeo. A dream of mine would be to barrel race professionally someday.
Bradley’s passion has allowed her to get to where she is today. In addition to rodeo and pageant competition, the young representative from Wisconsin has personally taken it upon herself to give off-track thoroughbreds that have met the end of their careers on the race track second chances.
“I have owned three and plan to own more in the future,” Bradley described. “Many of these horses find themselves unwanted after their racing days are over. I plan to use my Miss Rodeo Wisconsin title to further promote the use of [these horses] in western sports.”
Bradley recently graduated from UW-Stevens Point with a degree in Soil and Land Management and currently works as an intern at AgSource Labratories. Putting her degree to good use, the title of Miss Rodeo will prove to be both another accomplishment and an upcoming challenge for the young pageant winner.
The role of Miss Rodeo Wisconsin brings many challenges ahead as the winners from each state will spend the next year traveling the country, attending rodeos, fairs, parades, and other celebrations promoting the Miss Rodeo organization and the sport itself. Wisconsin plays host to 11 rodeo events of its own, of which Bradley will be in attendance. The young Miss Rodeo will also travel to Denver, Rapid City, and Cheyenne to name a few of her promotional destinations.
By winning the pageant in Wisconsin, Bradley has earned the chance to compete in the 63rd Annual Miss Rodeo America Pageant in Las Vegas, held in December of 2017. The 10-day long event is held in conjunction with the National Finals Rodeo, and Bradley will be in the company of over 30 other pageant representatives from other states.
The young ladies that are selected to represent their respective states at the national level in Las Vegas are responsible for all their travel expenses throughout the year, including all airfare and lodging. Bradley hopes to start the fundraising and sponsorship process early, beginning with her official coronation ceremony next week.
Held at North Star Lanes on Friday, Jan. 6, the coronation celebration begins at 6 PM when the doors open with the crowning to take place at 7:30 PM. There is a $5 cover charge with free food and drinks and entertainment for both kids and adults – including a DJ and dancing. The fundraiser also includes a 50/50 drawing and a gun raffle.
RSVPs for the coronation should be made by Jan. 2. and can be made either on Facebook or by calling (715) 889-4307.