DES MOINES Last, but certainly not least, came Brittany Nicholson, 19, of Ellsworth, in the FFA Parade of Champions Saturday afternoon at the Iowa State Fair.
Leading her Appaloosa, Cuervo, around the show ring in the Pioneer Livestock Pavilion, Nicholson was there because she secured three championships in the equine show senior western pleasure, bareback pleasure and western equitation.
And this was not her first rodeo. In 2013, she was the state fair's FFA champion senior western showman and champion western pleasure rider.
Nicholson, a sophomore at Iowa State University, said she's been competing with horses at the state fair since ninth grade.
She's following in the footsteps of her grandfather, Marvin Norem, of Ellsworth, who was a world champion in reining with Appaloosas.
Nicholson is majoring in animal science and said she hopes to work for as a drug rep for a medical company.
"I love the livestock industry," she said, and I love to communicating and helping people."
Eventually, Nicholson said, she hopes to work in the field of horse therapy.
She said FFA has been a great experience for her, whether within the South Hamilton FFA chapter or elsewhere.
"You have fun here," she said. "In FFA people help each other.
"I have friends from all around, other states, everywhere.
"And we always come back here and have fun."