Sunday, Dec. 7, 2008 | 2 a.m.
More Sun Rodeo Coverage
Miss Rodeo California, Maegan Ridley, has been crowned Miss Rodeo America 2009.
The 20-year-old blonde was awarded the title at the Orleans Hotel and Casino on Saturday afternoon.
Twenty-seven contestants from across the country were in Las Vegas this week for the 54th annual competition, which is run in conjunction with the National Finals Rodeo.
The weeklong pageant involved a variety of events, including a horsemanship competition, a fashion show, speeches, interviews and a Q&A round during Thursday’s president’s luncheon.
In addition to the national crown, Ridley won the prize for best “appearance” during Saturday’s coronation.
Miss Rodeo Wyoming, Stacy Jo Johnson, was named first runner up in the pageant and won the awards for congeniality, personality and best speech.
Miss Rodeo Nevada, Anna Bavor, won the pageant’s “written test” award but did not place in the top 10 finalists. She also was recognized for top sales achievement for selling the most raffle tickets for the pageant’s scholarship foundation.
In the final round of competition, Ridley and the top five finalists were asked what Miss Rodeo America should do to increase her role and influence as an ambassador.
Dressed in a full-length Julie Ewing pumpkin-colored leather dress and matching boots, Ridley said she would like to see Miss Rodeo America have a higher profile.
“If we can get Miss Rodeo America as much TV and radio coverage as humanly possible, that would be outstanding,” Ridley said.
“I think that the role of Miss Rodeo America is huge,” she said. Looking forward, she said, “Our Western heritage, our family values and morals and traditions are more important than ever.”
The Alta Loma, Calif., cowgirl was asked a randomly-selected question about the use of the electoral college in presidential elections during Thursday’s president’s luncheon’s Q&A session.
Ridley spoke calmly and coherently, first explaining, then outlining the pros and cons of the complicated and controversial system.
Ridley will assume her duties next year after the country’s current reigning rodeo queen, Amy Wilson, completes her term.
Miss Rodeo America 2009 Results
Miss Rodeo America: Miss Rodeo California, Megan Ridley
Top Five Finalists:
First Runner-up: Miss Rodeo Wyoming, Stacy Jo Johnson
Second Runner-up: Miss Rodeo South Dakota, Tara Trask
Third Runner-up: Miss Rodeo Colorado, Megan Grieve
Fourth Runner-up: Miss Rodeo Utah, Renae Cowley
Top 10 Finalists: Miss Rodeo Colorado, Megan Grieve; Miss Rodeo Texas, Avery Gonzales; Miss Rodeo Oklahoma, Kristin Killion; Miss Rodeo Nebraska, Kristen Schott; Miss Rodeo Utah, Renae Cowley; Miss Rodeo Minnesota, Dayna Iverson; Miss Rodeo Oregon, Nicole Andrews; Miss Rodeo South Dakota, Tara Trask; Miss Rodeo Wyoming, Stacy Jo Johnson; Miss Rodeo California, Megan Ridley
Photogenics Award: Miss Rodeo Hawaii, Shelby Rivera
Speech Award: Miss Rodeo Wyoming, Stacy Jo Johnson
Congeniality Award: Miss Rodeo Wyoming, Stacy Jo Johnson
Raeana Wadhams Spirit Award: Miss Rodeo South Dakota, Tara Trask
Best Written Test: Miss Rodeo Nevada, Anna Bavor
Best Appearance: Miss Rodeo California, Megan Ridley
Best Personality: Miss Rodeo Wyoming, Stacy Jo Johnson
Best Horsemanship: Miss Rodeo Arizona, Casey Jo Rose
People's Choice Award: Avery Gonzales, Miss Rodeo Texas
Sales Achievement: Anna Bavor, Miss Rodeo Nevada (Sales of Scholarship Foundation Raffle Tickets)
Scrapbook Awards: Janelle Schlobohm, Miss Rodeo Missouri (1st), Tara Trsk, Miss Rodeo South Dakota, (2nd), Dilynn Dodd, Miss Rodeo Arkansas (3rd), Nichole Andrews, Miss Rodeo Oregon (4th)
Chap Award: Carly Hagey, Miss Rodeo Illinois