Miss Rodeo Wyoming
Pageant History...

Compiled by Laurie Thoman, Miss Rodeo Wyoming, 1994

A legacy of cherished memories, hopes and dreams all began in Casper, Wyoming in 1955.  The first Miss Rodeo Wyoming pageant was held during the Casper Nite Fair and Rodeo.  That initial contest consisted of fourteen entries.  According to Marilyn Scott Freimark, (who took home the title of Miss Rodeo Wyoming that first year), competition was keen and the rodeo contractor furnished each contestant with a horse.  New horses were drawn each round.  At the crowning ceremony, movie actor, Rex Allen, presented Marilyn Scott with the crown.  Laurie Ann Hayes from Thermopolis was the runner-up.

Following the Miss Rodeo Wyoming pageant was the first ever Miss Rodeo America of the Rockies contest.  It was also held in Casper, Wyoming.  Soon after the competition, the title was shortened to "Miss Rodeo America," as it is known today.  The Rodeo Cowboys Association (RCA) voted to establish the contest as an annual event.  During the first year of the Miss Rodeo America pageant a set of fifteen judges were selected, five in each division, from all over the United States and even France.  Silent judges were dispersed throughout the audience.

The 1955 MRA pageant had nine contestants representing eight states of the Rocky Mountain Region and Canada.  Marilyn Scott, Miss Rodeo Wyoming, was selected as Miss Rodeo America to hold the title for the remainder of 1955 and the year 1956.  She represented Wyoming in the Miss Universe contest where she was offered a contract with Paramount Pictures and a TV series contact starring Casey Tibbs and Marilyn as the King and Queen of Rodeo.  Although she declined the part, feeling school was the place for her, she sated that she always wonders about the road not taken. 

Since the beginning of the Miss Rodeo Wyoming pageant and the Miss Rodeo America pageant in 1955, Wyoming is proud to say that we have had four young ladies bring home the title of Miss Rodeo America: Marilyn Scott Freimark, 1955; Sandy Meyer Brazile, 1984; Stacey Talbott Sinclair, 1992; and Michelle Green, 1994.  Both pageants have continued to grow and develop from their solid beginning.  Each year a new young lady is selected to help promote and preserve our western way of life and America's number one sport - Rodeo.

The Douglas Sorority, a women's service organization, had a major role in organizing the Miss Rodeo Wyoming pageant for many years.   Members provided chaperones, meals, housing and transportation for the contestants.  Paper work, publicity and planning for the pageant was also handled by the Sorority to benefit the community through their scholarships and other civic projects.  The Douglas Sorority turned the pageant production over to the MRWA in 2008.

It was not until 1977 that the Miss Rodeo Wyoming Association was formed.  Some original members include Dedee Merritt and Arlene Kensinger.  Arlene is a past president of the Miss Rodeo America Association.  Wyoming has continued to have on of the best associations in the United States.  Our organization helps delegate funds that the queen raises at her coronation each year, a scheduling coordinator sets up appearances and many major sponsors help make dreams come true. 

Several prizes and awards have been given over the years.  Lou Taubert's Ranch Outfitters donated trophies that varied in height from one to five feet tall.  Crowns ranged from leather to jade, all of which winners kept as a memento.  Today's winners will receive a $1500 scholarship, a trophy buckle and saddle, a silver platter, chaps, serape, a commemorative bracelet and numerous other items.  Awards are also given to first and second runner-ups, horsemanship, personality, appearance, speech and photogenic winners.  Pageant contestants choose Miss Congeniality and a Scrapbook winner. 

The individual beauty of the Wyoming Jade Crown stands out in any crowd and is very recognizable.  The Miss Rodeo Wyoming crown holds a history all its own with the special memories of the young girls who grew into beautiful ladies in just one year under its spell.  It has warmed the hearts and touched the souls of many.  It has been a guiding star on the darkest nights to those who have needed hope and inspiration.  The crown hold such precious prestige and honor to each Miss Rodeo Wyoming who has had the honor to place the crown on her hat.

Past Miss Rodeo Wyomings

* Selected as Miss Rodeo America
** Selected as top 5 at Miss Rodeo America
*** Selected as top 10 at Miss Rodeo America

Past Miss Rodeo Wyomings at the 2013 pageant.

BACK ROW: Kerin Castle Clark 1997, Laurie Thoman-1994, Sandra Utter Levering 1990, Jamie Moore Flitner 1985, Lael Wilhelm Good 1971, Wendy Courchaine Long 1969, Linda Kilgore Nunn 1967, Linda Lamb Kraft 1966, Jane Ann Johnston 1965, Rhonda Sedgwick Stearns 1963, Bonnie Rankin Terrell 1961, Mary Kay Walker 1956
FRONT ROW: Kimberly Kuhn 2012, Brittany Richards 2011, Stacy Jo Johnson Berger 2008, Crystal Rivers Myers-2007



2015 Miss Rodeo Wyoming Contestants

Maarissa Mason
Miss Teton County Fair and Rodeo

Maarissa is the 21 year old daughter of Marti Mason, Rob Mason and Gus Goetz. Her passion for Horses and Rodeo started at the age of five, competing in local barrel racing events and showing horses competitively on the American Quarter Horse and Open Circuits throughout her youth. Although her roots did not begin in Wyoming, she was taught that they can spread anywhere you plant them. Shortly after graduating High School in Michigan, she packed up her horses and made the move to Jackson, Wyoming with her family- where she will forever call home. Maarissa believes that Rodeo is truly the world's greatest "family sport", knowing that the heart of Rodeo not only lies in the competitors, but the young spectators who witness it. She continues to be an accessible role model, spreading knowledge and education about Rodeo, and sharing the spirit and passion she has for Horses and Rodeo. Maarissa has felt truly blessed to have had the opportunity to represent Teton County as their Fair and Rodeo Queen and has been grateful to all of her family and friends for their continued support in her endeavors. As she travels the Cowboy State and attends various Rodeos and events, she shares her platform "Let Your Roots Grow" with the hearts of children and young adults- reminding them to be open to change, and to try and learn new things. Maarissa will be attending the University of Wyoming in pursuit of a Bachelors of Arts Degree in History Education.

Shelby Page
Miss Laramie Jubilee Days

Shelby Page of Laramie, Wyoming reigns as Miss Laramie Jubilee Days 2014. She was crowned on April 6th of 2013 after she was chosen by a panel of three judges on her speaking, modeling, a personal interview, and lastly on her horsemanship. Shelby has traveled to many different rodeos including the Elizabeth Stampede, Encampment wood choppers jamboree, Walden Never Summer Rodeo, Cheyenne Frontier Days, and of course Laramie Jubilee Days. "Through all of my travels we have made a lasting impression on the crowd, I love to hear the rumble of applause and see all the little cowboys and cowgirls lining up to get an autograph. It has been my greatest honor to represent my hometown as their rodeo queen!" Shelby has received her Welding and Joining Technology Certificate from Eastern Wyoming College and is currently building her experience to go back to school and get her Masters in Agricultural Education to become a welding instructor. I look forward to using my Scholarship I received as Miss Laramie Jubilee Days to further my education! Of all the sporting events Shelby has chosen rodeo to be her most favorite sport! She was always told that she could ride anything with hair on it and Shelby has proven that many times. She feels at home ontop a ranch horse and loves to drag calves to the fire, wrestle them and give shots during brandings. She enjoys pushing 1000 head of yearlings to new pastures and enjoys when they get to rope one to doctor it. Shelby also enjoys doing leathercraft, welding, snowmobiling, swimming, and teaching 4H and FFA kids how to do speed events.

Greer Barney
Red Desert Roundup Rodeo Queen

There is nothing Greer loves more than being in the saddle. She started showing horses when she was a toddler in a Leadline class, but didn't like being led; she wanted control of the reins. When she was 13 she would ride one horse and lead 2 others to the local arena during her summer vacations. She grew up in Rock Springs, attending school and 4-H and always on the honor roll. She currently is a 4-H leader, sharing her passion with others. She always had a dream of becoming a Veterinarian. Her family's vet told her he couldn't hire her until she got her driver's license. On her 16th birthday, she obtained her driver's license, took her résumé to her vet and then drove the truck and horse trailer to her 4-H meeting. She was hired at Mountainaire Animal Clinic a short time later. She loves every minute of her job and only missed 2 sick days in 4+ years. Greer graduated from WWCC on 5/16/14, earning an AS Degree. She will attend UW in September to complete a bachelor's degree in pre-vet/animal science and then will apply to Veterinary colleges to pursue her career goal. Greer enjoys Working Cow Horse and Team Sorting competitions and loves riding at Flaming Gorge and the Sand Dunes. She was featured with her horse in the Sweetwater County Calendar and a UW education Horse Safety Education video. She loves to read and have fun with her 2-legged and 4-legged family and friends.

Laurel Austin
Miss Albany County Farm Bureau

Laurel's favorite place to be horse back is Wyoming's Snowy Range. Regardless of venue, Laurel does some of her best thinking in the saddle. She won her first buckle in the Laramie Jubilee Days Kid's Horse Show at the age of seven then later became Miss Laramie Jubilee Days 2013. While in 4-H and FFA she showed livestock and competed on the National Agricultural Issues Team while also earning All-conference and All-state recognition in athletics. Laurel's background is as diverse as the terrain around her. Through these organizations and rodeo she learned responsibility, the value of teamwork and the importance of friends and family. Laurel is an undergraduate in the Animal Science Department at the University of Wyoming where she is focused on animal nutrition, business and production. As a student she has learned more about animal care and welfare as a livestock attendant, participated on the University's Equestrian and Ranch Horse teams, and is a member of the Farm Bureau Young Farmers and Ranchers. While working at Rose Valley Ranch she has had the opportunity to learn more about the cutting horse industry, equine management and equine production. Laurel has learned that with hard work and dedication anything is possible. She would like to thank her family and community for their ongoing support. Laurel encourages all those around her to learn through experience, lead by example and inspire others to be their best.


2014 Pageant Award Sponsors

1st Runner Up: Cody & Crystal Myers
2nd Runner Up: Ann Palomba & Jamie Pond
Appearance: James & Maggie (Engels) Myers
Personality: Gwen Hansen
Horsemanship: Shackelford Sales & King's Saddlery
Photogenic: Snowy Range Veterinary
Sales Achievement: James Goodrich
Scrapbook: Paulette Moss
Speech: Johnson 99 Ranch
Congeniality: Rod & Linda Myers
Knowledge: Rod & Pam Rivers in memory of Hope Starwart knowledge coach
Most Programs Sold: Guy & Marcie Warpness
MRW Chaps: Tim Bath
MRW Spurs: Tom Balding Bits & Spurs
MRW Hat Can: Erin & Ethan Kyle
MRW Banner Pin: Holly Kennedy
MRW Chap Bag: Sue & Andy Heffron
MRW Briefcase: Parker Enterprises
MRW Banners: Cervi Championship Rodeo
$500 Scholarship for 1st Attendant
$2000 Scholarship for Miss Rodeo Wyoming 2014
MRWA Sponsor of the Year: WyoTech, Guy & Marcie Warpness
MRW Sponsor of the Year: Fremont Motors, Rock Springs, WY-Bill White


Little Miss Rodeo Wyoming Pageant

The Little Miss Rodeo Wyoming pageant will be held August 15th, 2013 in Douglas during the MRW Brunch.

Pageant is open to girls ages 5-12 years old - $50 entry fee due by August 5, 2013
Contestants will participate in a dance with MRW contestants and introduce themselves and answer a question.
Contestants receive a t-shirt, pageant program, autograph by MRW and contestants, ticket to brunch/speeches/modeling.
Contact Erin Kyle at 307-690-8911 or

2015 Miss Rodeo Wyoming Pageant Entry Packet

For the convenience of Miss Rodeo Wyoming contestants we have a portion of the entry packet available for download below. 
PLEASE NOTE: This is not the complete application packet. 
If you are planning to compete for Miss Rodeo Wyoming, please contact Laurie Thoman (
or home 307-877-9336 or cell 801-231-7041)for a complete application packet to be mailed to you. 
Not included below are three contestant releases, contestant letter, sample MRW contract, complete rulebook and other information.

RULEBOOK - Partial

APPLICATION - can type on document and print a hard copy to turn in, please do not alter format, and limit to two pages.

AP INFO AND AUCTION INFO - including deadline, entry fee, auction information

AD PRICE SHEET FOR MRW PROGRAM  - feel free to make additional copies for selling ads






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