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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Trio crowned 2011 Poway Rodeo Queens

Brittney Phillips, center, was crowned Miss Poway Rodeo Saturday night. Bridgette Lahaye, left, was crowned the junior rodeo queen, and Halie Winder as the 2011 Young Miss. Photo by Beverley Brooks

Trio crowned 2011 Poway Rodeo queens

By Pat Kumpan
Three young women — Brittney Phillips, Bridgette LaHaye and Halie Winder — are riding taller in the saddle today after being named Saturday as the new 2011 Poway Rodeo queens.
Phillips will serve as the senior queen, LaHaye as junior queen and Winder as Young Miss during the upcoming year.
The new rodeo ambassadors and others bid farewell to outgoing Senior Queen Hannah Jones, Junior Queen Natalie Averell and Young Miss McKayla Brown during the pageant at Midland Elementary School.
Both Jones and Brown served two years during their time representing the Poway Rodeo and the community of Poway.
During the months that led up to the pageant, Phillips said she was impressed with what Poway Rodeo queens related about their roles and experiences.
Those chats convinced Phillips that she needed to become a contestant “and get on board with that,” she said.
The new queens showed their horsemanship skills early Saturday morning at the Poway Valley Riders Association arena.
Pageant Director Lisa Banning said judges asked questions about horse care, feed, what diseases are common in the equestrian world and pertinent details, which reveal a lot about the rider and her connection with her horse.
Those morning scores, interviews with the judges and a contestant’s poise on stage all add up to the components of a rodeo queen, Banning said.
Phillips, 17, is a senior at Ramona High School. She volunteers at San Diego Hippotherapy, enjoys hiking and riding and has been riding for as long as she can remember.
LaHaye, who is stepping into the role of junior queen, is a Valley Center High School freshman. She also learned American Sign Language so she can work with deaf riders, enjoys soccer, 4-H, and is raising angus steers. She is a member of the Valley Center Vaqueros Young Riders.
Meanwhile, Winder, a sixth-grader at Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Lakeside. She is a student council member, has four horses and loves riding. As a 4-H member, she raises pigs and other animals and also enjoys fishing with her family.

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