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Stephanie Gruener


Miss Corn Palace Stampede

Miss Black Hills Stock Show

Miss Rodeo Aberdeen

Miss Rodeo Foothills



I have been an avid rider for about seventeen years. At the age of seven I started taking riding lessons from Lita on one of her lovable horse, Yogi. During that time, I learned everything from the basics of taking care of a horse to the stepping stones on how to become a remarkable rider. I would take weekly horsemanship and hunt seat lessons, which would help me in my future adventures. During my time in elementary, middle, and high school I was awarded numerous awards through 4H ranging from all-around rider to placing at state. After high school, I attended South Dakota State University on an equestrian scholarship for horsemanship. While on the equestrian team I had the opportunity to travel across the US to participate in competitions. Since graduating SDSU with a degree in Agriculture, I have continued riding at shows across the state in horsemanship and hunt seat. When I’m not in the show pen, I compete for Rodeo Queen Titles. With Rodeo, I had the privilege of riding different stock contractor horses with the titles of Miss SDSU, Miss Corn Palace Stampede, and Miss Black Hills Stock Show, Miss Rodeo Aberdeen, Miss Rodeo Foothills and 3rd runner up Miss Rodeo USA.



Everything listed above would have never been possible without the encouragement and training from Lita. When I started at a young age, Lita taught me about the work ethic one must have in the industry. This started with the simple task of just getting the horse groomed and saddled on time before lessons to continuing to work and practice on maneuvers that will later contribute with the overall performance of myself and the horse. Once I became more confident in my riding ability she continued to push me to become a better rider by putting me on different horses so when it came to competing for college and rodeo I was able to adjust to the horses’ abilities quickly. 

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