Akkermans crowned Ponoka Stampede Queen 2015

Sylvan Lake's very own Ashley Akkermans, 22, was crowned Ponoka Stampede Queen 2015 on Ponoka Stampede grounds last Friday.

Ashley Akkermans of Sylvan Lake has been crowned Ponoka Stampede Queen 2015.

Ashley Akkermans of Sylvan Lake has been crowned Ponoka Stampede Queen 2015.

Sylvan Lake’s very own Ashley Akkermans, 22, was crowned Ponoka Stampede Queen 2015 on Ponoka Stampede grounds last Friday. As queen, she’ll act as an ambassador for the sport of rodeo for a year.

During Stampede week in late June, Akkermans will attend sponsorship breakfasts, participate in the parade and ride in the rodeos.

She’ll also attend rodeos in Innisfail, Caroline, Rocky Mountain House and Calgary.

“The main part of Stampede Queen is the rodeo and to inform people on the sport of rodeo,” Akkermans said. “You do that by attending various events and doing lots of public relations.”

Being crowned rodeo queen is a huge achievement for Akkermans. The feat, she said, has been a longtime dream.

Having been raised in Ponoka and attended the Stampede every year, Akkermans said she remembers watching the rodeo queens riding their sparkling horses and wanting to be one of them.

She said she always wanted to be a cowgirl, and was introduced to the western and riding world when she got her own horse.

“I started to realize what a rodeo queen actually does,” Akkermans said. “It’s so cool, you get to meet so many amazing people within the sport. I get to represent the sport that I am so passionate about, and that’s my job. I get to travel around riding lots of different horses.”

Akkermans competed in a one-day competition that included horsemanship, public speaking, modelling and an interview with members of the Ponoka Stampede Committee and a few past rodeo queens.

Out of all the competitions, Akkermans said she really enjoyed the personal interview.

“They asked me why I would be good for their queen,” Akkermans said. “They asked me questions on rodeo and animal welfare, and personal questions on my commitment to see if I would qualify to do this job and to handle it well.”

Stepping into the role of a rodeo queen will be a transition for Akkermans, who has been studying psychology at Red Deer College.

“It’s surreal, I think I am still in shock,” Akkermans said. “I’ve gone from being a college student to all of a sudden taking on this amazing role that will keep me very busy throughout the summer.”

Akkermans said after she completes her reign as Ponoka Stampede Queen 2015, she’ll have more opportunities because of it.

“To have that title of being a rodeo queen is a big deal,” Akkermans said. “People look at that and really appreciate it.”


Just Posted

(Advocate file photo)
Red Deer down to 102 active COVID-19 cases

Central zone has 332 cases with 26 in hospital and five in ICU

Photo Courtesy of the Town of Sylvan Lake
Multiple edible parks found throughout Sylvan Lake

Apple trees, berry bushes and more have been planted in various parks around town

Curtis Labelle. (Photo Submitted)
More exciting music to come from Sylvan Lake’s Curtis Labelle

Curtis Labelle has been called Canadian Elton John or Billy Joel by fans

The Government of Alberta identified 115 new COVID-19 cases Sunday, bringing the provincial total to 3,089.
(Black Press file photo)
Red Deer COVID cases continue to fall

114 cases in Red Deer, down one from Saturday

Maskwacis Pride crosswalk (Left to right): Montana First Nation Councillor Reggie Rabbit, Samson Cree Nation Councillor Louise Omeasoo, Samson Cree Nation Councillor Katherine Swampy, Samson Cree Nation Councillor Shannon Buffalo, Samson Cree Nation Chief Vern Saddleback.
Pride in Maskwacis

The 4th inaugural Maskwacis Pride crosswalk painting took place on Saturday June 12th, 2021

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

Three calves were recently shot dead in Lacombe County near Mirror. (Photo from Facebook)
Calves shot and left for dead in central Alberta

Bashaw RCMP investigating three shootings

Tuesday’s Lotto Max draw went unclaimed. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Tuesday’s Lotto Max draw went unclaimed. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lotto Max jackpot goes unclaimed again

42 of the 64 Maxmillion prizes of $1 million were won, the majority were sold in Ontario

FILE - This July 6, 2017 file photo shows prescription drugs in a glass flask at the state crime lab in Taylorsville, Utah. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)
Contaminants in generic drugs may cause long-term harm to DNA: B.C. researcher

Scientist says findings suggest high volume overseas facilities require strict regulation

(Black Press Media file)
Dirty money: Canadian currency the most germ-filled in the world, survey suggests

Canadian plastic currency was found to contain 209 bacterial cultures

A worker, at left, tends to a customer at a cosmetics shop amid the COVID-19 pandemic Thursday, May 20, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Half of cosmetics sold in Canada, U.S. contain toxic chemicals: study

Researchers found that 56% of foundations and eye products contain high levels of fluorine

Annamie Paul, leader of the Green Party of Canada, speaks at a news conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on June 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Green Leader Annamie Paul facing no-confidence motion from party brass

move follows months of internal strife and the defection of MP Jenica Atwin to the Liberals

Tulips bloom in front of the Supreme Court of Canada in Ottawa, Thursday, May 10, 2018. Day two of a full week of scheduled hearings will be heard in Federal Court today on a case involving Indigenous children unnecessarily taken into foster care by what all parties call Canada’s “broken child welfare system.” THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
AFN slams Ottawa for ‘heartless’ legal challenge of First Nations child compensation

2019 decision awarded $40,000 to each Indigenous child removed before 2006

A health-care worker holds up a sign signalling she needs more COVID-19 vaccines at the ‘hockey hub’ mass vaccination facility at the CAA Centre during the COVID-19 pandemic in Brampton, Ont., on Friday, June 4, 2021. This NHL-sized hockey rink is one of CanadaÕs largest vaccination centres. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
‘Vaxxed to the max’: Feds launch Ask an Expert campaign to encourage COVID shots

Survey shows that confidence in vaccines has risen this spring

Most Read