Tuesday, 06 September 2016 08:00

Former Medicine Hat Stampede queen taking a run for the national Miss Rodeo Canada title

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Ali Mullin, who represented the Medicine Hat Exhibition and Stampede in 2015, will try to become the next Miss Rodeo Canada in November. Ali Mullin, who represented the Medicine Hat Exhibition and Stampede in 2015, will try to become the next Miss Rodeo Canada in November. Photo contributed

Ali Mullin passed over her Medicine Hat Exhibition and Stampede (MHES) crown just this summer, but if all goes according to plan, she could soon be wearing another one this fall.

Mullin will compete in the Miss Rodeo Canada contest in November during the Canadian Finals Rodeo in Edmonton.
“It was fantastic. It really was an experience of a lifetime,” says Mullin about her year-long reign as MHES Queen. “It was something that I will remember forever.”
Now she plans on representing Medicine Hat in Edmonton and hopefully earning the national title as Miss Rodeo Canada.
Representing rodeo is something Mullin has always had her sights set on. Originally from Manitoba where her family still resides on their quarter horse ranch, she moved to Medicine Hat to pursue her post-secondary education in visual communications at the college.
“It was the combination of the program at the college and the rodeo royalty program here that attracted me to move to Medicine Hat,” adds Mullin.
The year she spent representing the Medicine Hat Exhibition and Stampede was filled with activities and looking back on it, Mullin can see just how much she grew. Heading into the competition she felt like a fairly well-rounded individual with some life experience. After the busy 12 months, she saw just how much more she learned about herself, how her self-confidence grew and also the improvement in her public speaking skills.
“It’s made me feel even more prepared now,” she adds, about the upcoming Miss Rodeo Canada competition.
Choosing to chase the national title wasn’t a hard decision for the young woman who is heading into her second year, of three, at Medicine Hat College. Officials with the Medicine Hat Stampede are supportive, helping her with the paperwork and agreeing to send her to the competition as their representative this year. Mullin also has to file reference letters, fill out the official application and submit the required photographs of herself.
Once this is completed early this month, Mullin begins the work to prepare for the competition which is similar to the tasks she faced with the MHES.
“It’s a very similar structure as to what the public would have seen here. There is a horsemanship competition, public speaking and an interview. There is also a written exam on your rodeo knowledge and modelling (aspects).”
Mullin calls the last year the best practise of all, when it comes to preparing for the competition. She also has some great resources she can access since six past Medicine Hat royalty have competed on the national stage.
“I’ve been talking to some of those resources and getting tips and tricks,” adds Mullin. “I’ve been riding horses and studying for the written test and learning about Canadian rodeo.”
She has also been doing some modelling work when she can to try to build her confidence in that area.
With the amount of time that is required to be involved in the royalty programs, Mullin is grateful she has understanding instructors at Medicine Hat College.
She has taken on a slightly lighter load for this semester so she can better prepare for the November competition.
If her push for the title is successful, she knows she may have to make some decisions about holding off returning to her program for a year.
After her graduation from the college, Mullin hopes to use her education to pursue a career as a graphic designer specializing working with agricultural or small businesses.
“If I were to be successful, I’m still trying to figure that part out,” she adds, admitting it is important to give a plan some consideration. “I think college will still be there. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity if I’m fortunate to win. I would get to travel across North America promoting the awesome sport of rodeo.
“I would love the opportunity to promote this sport. It’s something I’ve grown up with and I’m passionate about it — the western lifestyle and culture.”
Mullin’s other favourite part about being involved in rodeo and the royalty program has been the opportunities she has had to meet new people.
“I was pretty new to Medicine Hat when I moved here and ran for the (MHES) title. It was a really special experience because I had the opportunity to meet people in Medicine Hat that I wouldn’t have met otherwise.”
Mullin, as Stampede Queen, was able to meet children, parents, go into schools and also did a lot of work with the United Way of Southeastern Alberta.
“I felt like it was a really amazing way to get to know the City of Medicine Hat and the surrounding area,” she adds. “I got to see some pretty cool stuff.”
Mullin is looking for sponsors to help support her in her quest to become Miss Rodeo Canada and does plan on holding at least one fundraiser this fall.
She has created a Facebook page where she shares information and updates about her quest under Ali Mullin - MRC Hopeful. She has also created a Go Fund Me page at: https://www.gofundme.com/ rodeoqueen-ali.

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Rose Sanchez

Assistant Managing Editor

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