Menan woman places in Miss Rodeo America
IDAHO FALLS — A Menan native took the Gem State to the big leagues in a national rodeo pageant.
Miss Rodeo Idaho, Hunter Rae Rackham, was the second runner-up in the Miss Rodeo America Pageant that recently took place in Las Vegas. She also won a prize based on her character, called the Sherry Smith Scholarship Award.
“Representing Idaho has been a true privilege,” Rackham told EastIdahoNews.com. “It was an honor to represent the humble, wholesome and passionate people of the great Gem State on the national stage.”
To celebrate Rackham’s achievements, the Central Fire District, Rigby Police Department and the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office will escort her vehicle in her honor Monday. The event will be on Main Street in Rigby at 7 p.m. The procession will start at County Line heading north and continue down State Street in Rigby then turn west onto Main Street.
The competition lasted from Dec. 3 to 10. Rackham, 21, participated in three events: horsemanship (on a horse contestants have never ridden), extemporaneous speech and impromptu speech. She competed against 30 other contestants from around the country.
Contestants competed in a fashion show, where they were judged on modeling, poise, appearance and personality.
“We go through multiple interviews! We also eat with the judges every day. It might be breakfast, lunch or dinner, but we will sit down to a meal with them,” Rackham said.
Rackham said to qualify for the pageant, contestants must already be holding the title for their state. Competitors are only able to compete in Miss Rodeo America once in their lifetime.
Rackham began her reign as Miss Rodeo Idaho in January and has traveled the nation representing Idaho in states like Alaska down to Florida.
“As Miss Rodeo Idaho 2017, it was my purpose to bring to light the unity of our Western way of life and inspire others,” Rackham said. “There is no other sport that better encompasses faith, family and friendship like rodeo. I believe that our world could use a few more cowboys and cowgirls! So mamas … let your babies grow up to be cowboys!”
Rackham’s plans are now to use the scholarships she has received and go back to school in business management with an emphasis in marketing. She wants to pursue a career in Idaho real estate focusing on agricultural and commercial sales.
“I would ultimately like to continue this Western way of life by helping farmers and ranchers find the perfect property,” Rackham said.
Rackham is thankful for the encouragement she received while away from home.
“I am overwhelmed by the support I’ve been given by my community, friends, family and peers alike, even by complete strangers who have heard or seen my story online,” Rackham said.
She also said she was “overwhelmed with everyone’s kindness.”
“My heart is full,” she said. “I am blessed beyond measure.”