This year’s Lake County Round-Up will be represented by Queen Katherine McKenzie, who was bestowed with the honor following the traditional tryout process held on Thursday, May 22.
All pardonable clichés aside, this is, by no means, McKenzie’s first rodeo; quite literally. She served as a Round-Up princess on the court for 2013 and a Junior Rodeo Princess in 2011.
McKenzie, 17, is currently finishing her junior year at Lakeview High School.
Royalty also runs in her family, as her aunt, Paula Fitzgerald, also previously served as a princess in years past.
Over the course of the summer, McKenzie will keep plenty busy in traveling to rodeos and events throughout the region, all for the primary purpose of promoting the Lake County Round-Up weekend, which is set for Aug. 28-Sept. 1 this year.
Appearances will include events in Cedarville, Calif., Christmas Valley and Klamath Falls, among others.
During the Round-Up weekend, McKenzie will keep plenty busy with appearances that include introducing the opening act at the concert and in the Labor Day parade, and grand entry at both days of the rodeo.
A major duty throughout the weekend will also include the sale of raffle tickets for the annual Lake County Round-Up commemorative quilt. Proceeds from this sale benefit the Lake County Round-Up Association, McKenzie said.
This year’s queen said that a major point of attraction is the opportunity to travel and interact with other communities in promoting the traditional Lake County Round-Up.
“I think what I enjoy most is going around and getting to know all kinds of different people,” she said. “The experience is definitely worth it. Even if you’re a shy person, it’s so much fun. You get to meet so many different new people.”
McKenzie also said that she’s proud to continue to serve in a long-standing Lake County tradition, and believes that the Round-Up court is one that deserves to be preserved through the years.
McKenzie is the daughter of Jeff McKenzie and Roseanne Fitzgerald. Her siblings include Colin and Daniel McKenzie.