Queen of the rodeo

Megan Dano poses for a photo with her horse, Sally. Dano is the 2007 Thunderbird Pro Rodeo Queen. - Photo by Rachel Brant
Megan Dano poses for a photo with her horse, Sally. Dano is the 2007 Thunderbird Pro Rodeo Queen.
— image credit: Photo by Rachel Brant

Megan Dano has been around rodeos for years. Her love of the sport recently landed her the role of Thunderbird Pro Rodeo Queen.

The 18-year-old Poulsbo resident has been competing in rodeo for four years, but she has been around it her entire life. Her brother was a bull rider and her sister was a rodeo princess.

“Rodeo is my main focus in life,” Dano said. “If you are involved with horses it pretty much takes up all your time.”

Dano represented the Silver Spur Saddle Club as queen in 2004 and the Northwest Junior Rodeo Association in 2006. This is her first year working with the Thunderbird Pro Rodeo.

About seven women applied to be the 2007 Thunderbird Pro Rodeo Queen. Applicants answered five questions and the judges selected the finalists. The remaining applicants had face-to-face interviews with the judges and answered questions about rodeo.

“I was at the Rascal Flatts concert in Tacoma (on March 4) when I found out I won,” Dano said. “My mom called and told me I won during the concert.”

Dano has a busy year ahead of her. She will be traveling throughout Washington giving speeches about rodeo. She also will be working with Corey’s Day on the Farm and the Northwest Burn Foundation.

“Winning this title not only gives me the opportunity to represent the wonderful sport of rodeo, but even more importantly to raise awareness of Corey’s Day on the Farm and the Northwest Burn Foundation,” Dano said.

Corey’s Day on the Farm allows special needs children to experience “a day on the farm.” This year the event is on May 14 and 15. The Northwest Burn Foundation helps burn victims and educates the public on how to prevent burns from happening.

Dano’s mother, Annie Dano, is very pleased that her daughter is the 2007 Thunderbird Pro Rodeo Queen.

“Of all the titles she has won, this is the best,” Annie said. “She will be a great representative for the rodeo. She’s been going at this for a long time.”

Dano is a champion cow rider and won seven buckles in various events including goat tying and the mechanical bull riding event at last year’s Thunderbird Pro Rodeo.

“Cow riding and goat tying are my favorites,” she said.

Dano hopes to become a licensed cosmetologist and open her own salon. She wants to continue working with horses and hopes to have her own farm someday.

“I would like to take in horses that have been abused,” Dano said.

Dano hopes the Kitsap County community will attend the Thunderbird Pro Rodeo on June 23 and 24 at the Fairgrounds.

“I have made a lot of lifelong friendships and memories in rodeo,” Dano said. “That’s why I think rodeo is so great.”

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