Newly-crowned 2022 Sidney Rodeo Queen Anna Horn learned compassion, empathy and self-acceptance at an early age.
Horn is the youngest child of parents Jeff and Brenda Horn from Stuart, and she has three older brothers: Aaron, Adam and Abel.
“We are a very close family,” she said. “My brother, Abel, has Angelman Syndrome, and it really affected our lives and brought us closer together. It really helped grow my passion for people of all kinds and it taught me to be patient. It also taught me not to care how people look at me. People would stare at my brother, and it would bother me. But then my mom would always say that God made him this way and it’s okay. We are who we are. Mom installed that in me at a young age and it definitely helped my career choices and made me a more empathic teacher.”
Horn was homeschooled and dual-enrolled with West Central Valley High School and graduated in 2015. She went to Southwest Community College in Creston and earned a degree in professional music before transferring to Northwest Missouri State University in Maryville, Missouri to complete a bachelor’s degree in vocal music education. Horn currently lives in Barnard, Missouri, and is in her second year of teaching for Jefferson C-123 schools in Conception Junction, Missouri.
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It wasn’t a smooth road to becoming the 2022 Queen.
“This title means so much to me because it has been three years in the making,” Horn said. “I’ve tried to run the past few years but because of a new job and other life circumstances, I wasn’t able to run. This was the year for it and the Lord has blessed me with being able to hold this title.”
Horn was very active in high school and continues to be involved in her community.
“I was in anything fine arts related, as well as FFA and speech,” she said. “The biggest part of my life is being a Christian and being dedicated to the Lord, so church has always been a big part of my life, and it still is. I am currently on the worship team at my church in Maryville, and I’m also a youth leader for the youth group. Every summer, I go to a church camp where I direct and counsel campers at horse camps.”
On the day the coronation was held, Horn and the other candidates were kept quite busy.
“We started our day off at nine in the morning with individual, personal interviews with the judges,” she said. “It’s a time when they get to know us and can ask any type of question. It could be rodeo related, it could be current events questions or a question about our personalities. After that we gave our speeches, modeled our western formal wear and answered impromptu questions at noon.”
The horsemanship portion of the day followed, with a horsemanship interview at 5 p.m.
“For horsemanship, the judges gave us a pattern that we needed to perform on horseback,” Horn said. “Typically this is a reining pattern, and it is basically to show that you can ride and control a horse and have a good seat while you’re doing it.”
Horn was comfortable riding as she was on her own horse, Texas, an American quarter horse.
Coronation followed at 6:30 p.m.
While Horn is the new Sidney Rodeo Queen, she isn’t new to the sport of rodeo or pageantry.
“I first started rodeo queening back in 2012, and I won my very first title of Miss Leon Rodeo Princess. And I have just been in love with the sport of rodeo ever since,” she said.
Horn has previously held five rodeo queen titles and enjoys being part of the rodeos, too. “I’ve also been able to incorporate cowboy mounted shooting into some of the rodeos that I go to. I am a level three shooter,” she added.
Horn doesn’t get to sit back and rest on her laurels this week.
“This week, I will be going out and visiting sponsors every day and thanking them for supporting the rodeo and the queen pageant,” she said. “I will be doing TV and radio interviews, as well. Part of my duty at the rodeo, as queen, is to help keep the arena clear during all the roping events. I make sure calves go back to their pen each time. I will also be announced every night and get to do a ‘hot lap’ as Miss Sidney, Iowa Rodeo Queen. I also help with the mutton bustin’.”
Horn will also participate in the Grand Entry at the start of each performance and will sign autographs every night after the performances.
She said she is very excited about the week ahead.
“I am really looking forward to this week in Sidney,” Horn said. “I have come as visiting royalty before, but I have never had the full-week experience and I am just so excited to be a part of this community now and be a part of this long-lasting tradition.”
The responsibilities as queen will certainly keep Horn busy throughout the year.
“My main job as a rodeo queen is to be spokesperson for the sport of rodeo and to be an ambassador,” she said. “Throughout the year, I will be going to different rodeos, parades and making school visits to talk about the sport of rodeo.
“I want people to know how excited I am to represent this rodeo and the community. The very first time I came to Sidney, I was immediately taken in, like I had been here forever. It’s had a huge impact on me and a big reason why I wanted to come back and represent this rodeo.”
The First Runner Up was Melissa Pauley and Jessica Meseck received Second Runner Up honors. Pauley won the Horsemanship competition and Meseck won both the People’s Choice and Congeniality awards, while Horn earned top points for her speech.
Judges for the event were Bobette Fife from Corning; Kristin Gillenwater from Mound City, Missouri; and Nikki Williams-Simons from Clarinda. Gillenwater served as the 2002 Sidney Rodeo Queen.