Pioneer Days planning under way

By Jack King

“Flying High in Clovis” is the theme of this year’s Pioneer Days celebration scheduled June 2-8, said Clovis/Curry County Chamber of Commerce Director Ernie Kos.
This year, in addition to the annual Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association rodeo, Pioneer Parade, Little Buckaroo Rodeo, Pioneer Women of the West breakfast and beauty pageants, Pioneer Days will feature hot-air balloon launches, June 7 and 8. Also scheduled: A hot-air balloon “glow” on June 7, featuring 20 to 30 balloons moored close the Plains Regional Medical Center, Kos said.
Balloons also will be a theme in the Pioneer Parade on Main Street at 10 a.m. on June 7.
“Some of the pilots and their balloons will appear in the parade and we’re looking for balloon themes in groups participating in the parade,” Kos said.
The deadline for those wishing to participate in the Pioneer Days parade is 5 p.m. June 6, Kos said. There will be six categories: marching/walking units; float – business/commercial; mounted units; motorized/antique vehicle; floats – clubs/organizations/churches; and “other.” Participants in each category will be eligible for a first, second or third prize, as well as a “sweepstakes” prize, for the top unit in the parade, Kos said.
The deadline is Friday for those wishing to participate in the two beauty competitions being held during Pioneer Days, said organizer Wilma Fulgham.
There will be two different competitions, the Pioneer Days Queen and Princess and Little Buckaroo Queen and Princess events, and the Miss Rodeo New Mexico events, Fulgham said.
The Pioneer Days events are local events. Categories include Pioneer Days Queen, ages 17 to 22; Pioneer Days Princess, ages 13 to 16; Little Buckaroo Queen, ages 8 to 12, and Little Buckaroo Princess, ages 4 to 7.
Participants in the Miss Rodeo New Mexico event, ages 18 to 24, will be eligible to go on to national competition in 2004, Fulgham said. She said Miss Rodeos are selected a year in advance, because it takes a year for the young women to prepare for national competition.
Also to be selected are Miss Rodeo New Mexico Teen, ages 16 to 17; Miss Rodeo New Mexico Princess, ages 13 to 15; Miss Junior Rodeo New Mexico, ages 9 to 12; and Little Miss Rodeo New Mexico, ages 7 to 9, said Fulgham.
Those who want to get an application for either of the two pageants or to get more information, can contact Fulgham at 762-3237, 763-6231, 760-6487 or at wilmaf@plateautel.net.