Spring Fling to gear up community for Cowboy Days

EVANSTON — The annual kickoff for the 2017 Evanston Cowboy Days celebration, the fun and exciting Spring Fling, is just around the corner. Lots of fun is promised for the evening of May 20, at Evanston’s Machine Shop, starting with happy hour at 6 p.m. and dinner at 7 p.m.

At the dinner, the grand marshal for the 2017 rodeo and parade will be announced; sponsor of the year, honored queen and volunteer of the year will also be announced. There will be a fashion show by Murdoch’s, as well as an auction.

The highlight of the night will be when one lucky lady will be crowned Miss Evanston Cowboy Days 2017. In addition, this year organizers will also name a princess. The competition will be all day long if you want to visit the Machine Shop at 10 a.m., where the girls will model and answer impromptu questions. They will have private interviews then will meet at the Carlson’s arena early afternoon for the horsemanship part of the contest.

There are some great prizes for the girls, including a beautiful saddle for the queen, donated by P&M Mackey. For more information, call Evanston Cowboy Days President Dustin Matthews at (307) 379-8019 or queen coordinator Sallie Waters at (307) 708-4021. You can also contact any of the queen contestants to purchase a dinner ticket for $20. 

Miss Rodeo Wyoming Abby Hayduk of Evanston will be in attendance.

Falynn Mackey is the 17-year-old daughter of Payton and Marlene Mackey of Evanston. She is sponsored by Mackey Stables. She is finishing her junior year at Evanston High School and dances on the EHS Classics dance team.

Falynn said she is looking forward to a future in physical therapy and sports medicine and obtaining her degree from Dixie State University. She enjoys riding and competing with her horses, hunting, dancing (swing, line, hip-hop, jazz, lyrical, clogging and cheer). She loves spending time with friends and family — whether it’s camping, branding, moving cattle or bareback riding after a long ride.

Falynn has a passion and love for all different kinds of animals and takes pride in showing them at jackpots, the county fair and the Wyoming State Fair. Her animals include quarter horses, market goats, sheep, pigs, dairy goats, miniature horses, breeding beef and show rabbits. She is a member of the Utah High School Rodeo Association and competes in barrels, poles, goat tying and rodeo queening.

Falynn said she would like to be Miss Evanston Cowboy Days Queen to be a part of one of the biggest celebrations in Evanston. She said it would be exciting to represent Cowboy Days, traveling to other rodeos across Wyoming and Utah. It would be an opportunity to share her love for the sport of rodeo and what it has done for her.

Her favorite saying, “To know where you are going, you have to know where you came from,” applies to everyday life, especially the professional sport of rodeo. The title of 2017 Evanston Cowboy Days Rodeo Queen would give her the opportunity to share western traditions and educate others about where rodeo originally got its roots.

Bailee Mackey hails from Evanston, where she grew up on Sulphur Creek Reservoir with a life full of family, friends and animals. She is sponsored by P&M Welding. Bailee serves as activity coordinator for the local 4-H Club and loves showing horses, hog, rabbits and goats. She is also a proud showman at the Uinta County Fair.

She is the 17-year-old daughter of Payton and Marlene Mackey and attends Evanston High School. Bailee is a dancer on the EHS Classics dance team and looks forward to competing for the 2018 state championship title her senior year. She plans to attend Utah State University in the fall of 2018, pursuing a degree in veterinarian science and specializing in equine nutrition and chiropractics. 

She enjoys riding horses on her family ranch, working cattle, expressing her feelings through dance, loves to clog, participates in the 4-H, FFH, FCCLA, and competes in barrels, poles and queening in the Utah High School Rodeo Association, local junior rodeos, horse shows, gymkhanas and jackpots. 

She said being crowned the Miss Evanston Cowboy Days Queen would be a dream come true. Cowboy Days means more than holding a title, it’s showing up dedicated to teach others about this great sport, leading by example, being a representative and example for youth to look up to.

She added that it also means putting a smile on everyone’s face and meeting people throughout the rodeo family. This is a wonderful opportunity to serve the Evanston community, Cowboy Days Rodeo and its committee, the sport of rodeo and her western heritage. Bailee hopes to inspire others’ young minds, and seek out opportunities throughout the rodeos she attends to encourage others to support all the hard work, diligence in caring for nature and animals, along with honoring her ancestors and the western way of life.

Katie Labrum is the 12-year-old daughter of Ryan and Crystal Labrum of Bear River. She is sponsored by Wal-Mart of Evanston. Katie is in the seventh grade at Evanston Middle School and has maintained a 4.0 GPA the past two years.

She has been raised around horses and rodeo since she was born. She has learned a lot about rodeo from her older brother, Justin. She grew up watching him ride steers, bulls and saddle broncs. She’s spent many years learning about rodeo and not only loves watching the contestant, but also the stock. 

She loves watching the rodeo queens. Katie loves to pleasure ride and do ranch work. She loves spending time helping her brother move cows, branding, or just any other type of work that needs to be done.

She is a member of Bear River Riders, Wranglers 4-H Club and the Almy Outlaws 4-H Horse Club. She loves anything to do with 4-H and animals. She shows pigs, goats, rabbits, dogs, chickens and horses. She competes at county, state and national shows, and she loves every minute of it.

Katie also enjoys cake decorating, oil painting and 4-H judging. Her favorite subject in school is band and she loves playing her flute. She is a member of the EMS jazz band. Katie loves ice fishing, hunting and spending time with her family.

Her favorite quote is, “The only way to have a friend is to be one.” Katie’s future goals include being Evanston Cowboy Days Queen. She also wants to attend college and be on a livestock judging and show team. She wants to go to veterinarian school to support her dream of becoming a stock contractor. 

Katie wants to be Miss Evanston Cowboy Days Princess to promote the cowboy way of life. She said it would be a great experience for her and her horse to promote the Evanston Cowboy Days Rodeo.