We’ve got a court for Chief Joseph Days 2016.

Tryouts were held Sunday, Aug. 22, and it was no surprise that the three girls who tried out, Taylor Grote, Lauren Makin, and Sarah Aschenbrenner, made the grade. All three of these girls are bona-fide horsewomen, accomplished speakers, and able to represent their community well.

Who will be queen and who will be a princess? Only ticket sales will tell. Any one of these ladies would make a wonderful queen and whoever has the honor of being a princess will make the most of it. Here are your contenders:

• Taylor Grote has been dreaming of being on the CJD court for a long time. It’s her “biggest dream,” she says, and she wants to not only represent CJD, but her county.

She’s 16 years old and a junior at Joseph Charter School. Her parents are Dennis and Julie Grote and her grandma and grandpa were CJD Grand Marshals in 1997.

Taylor is involved in 4-H Horse and Swine, volleyball, softball, FFA, and FCCLA. She started really riding horses when she was 8 years old. She was a member of Pony Club and then expanded her knowledge of horses by joining 4-H. She is an active member of the Nez Perce Riders 4-H horse club. She enjoys riding horses, outdoor activities, drawing and reading. Taylor has received the Champion award in 4-H presentation for three years, qualified for State 4-H Horse fair for three years in five or more events, 4-H Dad Potter 3-step award, class secretary during her freshman and sophomore years and was awarded Intermediate All Around Horse award in 2014. She rode her Quarter Horse gelding, Jag,in the riding competition for the CJD court.

After high school, Taylor plans to attend Portland State University and earn a degree in physical therapy.

One of Taylor’s references states, “Taylor’s speaking ability, riding ability and dedication combined with her personality will help make Chief Joseph Days continue to look its best.”

• Lauren Makin loves promoting rodeo and can’t wait to “dress up, meet people, learn new skills, see the sites and have the honor of representing the most amazing community.”

She’s 16 years old and a junior at Joseph Charter School. Lauren is the daughter of Bryan and Kit Makin of Wallowa.

Lauren enjoys riding and showing her horse and raising and showing cattle for 4-H and FFA. She’s a 2015 Eastern Oregon Livestock Show Princess, FFA Greenhand Treasurer/Star Greenhand/Historian/Reporter, Sophomore Class Vice President and Student Body Treasurer, Junior Class President, 4-H club president for three years, received 4-H County medals in both horse and livestock, 4-H Dad Potter 3-step award, and 2015 Offensive Player in basketball. She rode her Quarter Horse gelding, Boomer, in the riding competition for the CJD court.

After high school Lauren plans to attend EOU and focus on a career as a dental hygienist.

One of Lauren’s references states, “Lauren is always able to solve problems with ease and motivate people in a well-balanced manner. Lauren’s ideas, leadership and ambition are respected by peers, teachers, children and members of the community alike.”

• Sarah Aschenbrenner looks forward to being on the Chief Joseph Days court and expanding her horsemanship career. She’s also excited to interact and reach out to new people. Her time on the CJD court will be spent eagerly promoting Wallowa County, Chief Joseph Days and the sport of rodeo.

She’s 16 years old and a junior at Enterprise High School. Her parents are Chad and Cindi Aschenbrenner. She is appreciative of her parents’ and grandparents’ support for all her activities.

Sarah has three strong passions in her life — sports, FFA and academics. Her favorite sport is basketball. Sarah’s achievements include lettering in varsity basketball her freshman year, outstanding member of the Enterprise FFA Chapter for two years, member of the National Honors Society, Excellence in English II award, and she received the 4-H Dad Potter 3-step award. She rode her 19-year-old Quarter Horse mare, Kat, in the riding competition for the CJD court.

After high school Sarah is interested in Medical Imaging Technology in hopes of becoming an ultrasound technician. She is also interested in Veterinary Medicine. She is considering several schools: OIT in Klamath Falls, IIT in Boise or TVCC in Ontario.

One of Sarah’s references stated, “Sarah’s work ethic is stellar. She is coachable and inquisitive. Besides being an able and passionate horsewoman, Sarah is also an engaging public speaker and a good teammate.”

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