KINGMAN - Five girls are competing for the titles of Andy Devine Days Rodeo 2014 Queen and Teen Queen this year.
The reigning queens will be crowned at 1 p.m. Sept. 29 during the 29th Annual Andy Devine Days PRCA Rodeo at the Mohave County Fairgrounds. The queen contestants are Brittney Brodar, Austyn Lynn Burt, Becca Polizzi and Mira Singer. The sole teen queen contestant is Breanna Weber.
The queen winner will be crowned by Taylor Overson, the reigning queen for 2013. Her counterpart, Baylee Hammond, will crown the new winner of the teen queen title. Both girls have spent the past year promoting Kingman's rodeo at rodeos and parades across the state and will pass those duties on to the new winners.
"It's been a really good experience being queen and it has taught me a lot," said Overson, who has appeared at four pro rodeos and three amateur rodeos in Arizona as queen. "I'm really quiet, so speaking in public has taught me to open up more. I've had a lot of fun as the rodeo queen and don't regret winning at all."
Brodar, 17, of Golden Valley, attends Kingman High School and wants to become a veterinarian after she graduates. She has volunteered at Last Chance Ranch Sanctuary and Second Chance Ranch, two animal rescue facilities, as well as at Stockton Hill Chiropractic and Grace Lutheran Church. Her hobbies are riding horses and dirt bikes, swimming and running. Her ambition is to become a professional barrel racer and eventually have a family of her own.
Burt, 16, lives in Kingman and attends Kingman Academy of Learning High School. Her favorite sports are barrel racing and team roping, and her ambition in life is to finish high school, go on to college and become a certified veterinary technician. Burt said she wants to be queen because she enjoys going to rodeos and participating in barrel racing and roping events.
Polizzi, 17, of Kingman, is a student at Insight Academy of Arizona and has special training in piano. She enjoys baseball, rodeo, drawing, exercising and playing the piano. Polizzi wants to enlist in the Air Force after she graduates and become a combat pilot, then go on to get a degree in technical engineering, law or theater. She wants to be rodeo queen because she loves to ride and compete, and it would be a good chance for her to learn more about rodeos.
Singer, 16, of Kingman, attends Kingman Academy of Learning High School and participates in the certified nursing course there and volunteers at Kingman Regional Medical Center. She wants to be a registered nurse after she graduates. She enjoys barrel racing, roping, riding horses, swimming, boating and traveling. Singer said she wants to be queen because she enjoys being involved in a rodeo setting and believes representing Kingman would be a positive experience for her.
Teen queen contestant Weber, 13, of Kingman, attends Kingman Academy of Learning Middle School and has been on the Straight A Honor Roll for seven years. Her scholastic goal is to make straight As through her entire educational career. She has special training in barrel racing, pole bending, goat typing and breakaway roping, and has been a National Barrel Horse Arizona State Champion and a National Little Britches Finalist in all four areas. She wants to become a veterinarian.
"I want to be teen queen to promote the sport of rodeo - the past, present and future," said Weber. "I want to represent Kingman and help keep rodeo alive."
Competition for the girls starts 8 a.m. Saturday, when the girls are judged on a short interview and how they ride their horses during several events. A pageant gathering will take place at 1 p.m. that day at the Elks Lodge, 900 Gates Ave., and is open to the public. Tickets are $5 each and hors d'oeuvres will be served. The contestants will be judged on appearance, modeling, public speaking, questions and an interview. And all five girls will ride in the Andy Devine Days parade at 8 a.m. Sept. 28.
"Being rodeo queen is a very exciting experience," said Tiffany Leo, queen coordinator and a former queen herself. "The girls gain self-confidence through public speaking and being in the limelight. They meet people from all walks of life, creating life-long friendships, and they all have a great time."
For more information and tickets to the pageant gathering, call Leo at (928) 715-5920.