Sammie Neaman speaks about her experience as Fort Hall Rodeo Queen.
By LORI ANN EDMO
FORT HALL — A cookout for outgoing Fort Hall Rodeo Queen Sammie Neaman was July 16 at the Fort Hall Indoor Arena where attendees ate, kids rode horses and a display featured awards and accomplishments.
Sammie said it was her her last day as rodeo queen. “”My experience as rodeo queen has been one of the best years of my life. I went to the INFR, I was in a movie, I went to rodeos and I met new friends.” “It was an amazing experience overall and a great opportunity for me and in my life.”
She also said it was a great milestone. “I can’t wait for my next adventure,” she continued. “Overall I would like to thank all my family and friends and all my sponsors for supporting me this year — keeping you guys along my journey.” “I want to thank you guys deep down in my heart — I really appreciate it.”
Although she’s sad that her reign is going, “I’m happy.”
Display at the Indoor Arena that shows Sammie's rodeo equipment, queen applications, her photos, scrapbook and awards for the new rodeo royalty.
Her advice to potential upcoming rodeo queen contestants is she believes that everyone can have a dream, everybody should go for that new job, take that next leap onto the next lily pad, and move forward. “Don’t look into your past, keep looking forward. You got to find that love and motivation to keep going forward,” she continued. She advised whatever you do, no matter if you fail, you are always learning.
Sammie said to always think positive and go for the best. She has two quarter horses she used through her rodeo queen travels Darla and Blue Duck. Sammie traveled throughout Indian Country in the sport of rodeo and representing the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes as well.
She said Darla has determination to get the job done. “You can feel her positivity throughout in whatever she does – cows, holding a flag while Blue Duck is motivated.”
A display showed her various equipment she used, a scrap book of her life and rodeo queen applications. It also had the awards for the next queen including a silver crown, a belt buckle, engraved stirrups, a jacket and various other supplies.
She gave away door prizes to attendees.
Sammie also talked about ranch bronc riding she started in 2018. She started training horses and a friend talked her into riding at the Winnemucca event where rode about 6.4 seconds. “After that I fell in love and I’m not stopping,” she continued.
She’s been in Nevada, Colorado, and Idaho but is also affiliated with the Texas Women Bronc Riding Association. She’s been to a couple of the events but they are all the way on the other side of the country.
She said it’s a really hard sport to get into – you have to be physically and mentally tough. One also has to get over your fears, “You can’t be scared. Horses smell fear.” She noted when you get on, you have to be prepared, be ready. “You got to know the consequences that come with it — once you’re on, it’s a great ride – I love it.”