Welcome family, friends and everyone near and far to this year’s 71st Northern Manitoba Trapper’s Festival! I am Courtney Skye Sigurdson and proudly sponsored by Berna Dean Flowers and Gifts. I am a twenty three year old loving the life that I was grateful to be born into. I was born on Opaskwayak Cree Nation to my loving parents, Nicole and Vincent Lathlin. I have two younger sisters who mean the world to me, Halley Sigurdson and Lacey Lathlin.
For the entirety of my life, I have always been the extremely shy person who had let too many amazing opportunities slip right past me. I have decided that, no longer, will that ever stop me which in turn, led me into running for this year’s fur queen pageant.
I went to school at Joe A. Ross from kindergarten up until the middle of grade eleven, once the new junior high/ high school opened its doors. From there, I graduated from Oscar Lathlin Collegiate in 2012. In June of 2013, I graduated from University College of the North with the culinary arts certificate. In September of 2018, I intend to go back to school at UCN to attain my early childhood education. My plan is to go work in the United Kingdom.
I really enjoy writing my own stories, poems and silly other things. If I’m not writing, then you would most certainly find me with my nose deep into one of my favourite novels. In my spare time, I take karate (which I absolutely love!), practice playing my violin and keyboard, playing alongside my little sisters or watching movies like Harry Potter!
As for my job, I currently work full-time as the cashier at Paperworks Plus, not only manning the till but taking down the orders that people come in to place as well. It is a very fulfilling job that I truly enjoy doing. It doesn’t hurt either to have such a kind hearted and wonderful boss like Connie!
For all of those who know me, running fur queen seemed nearly impossible. Why? Because of how painfully shy I am. When my cousin approached me and told me that I should consider doing it, my only thought was, “I can’t run. I’m way too shy.” But for the next couple of days, I gave it some very serious thought. Eventually that thought turned into me signing the application and finally, handing it in. Then the time came to tell my family and friends that I was officially running. It was to say the least, a shock to them all including myself. Do not limit yourself into what you can’t do!
With all of that being said, I look forward to finally being able to break out of my shell that I’ve been stuck in for far too long. I can’t wait to go around this small but amazing community and become a bigger presence than I’ve ever been. Most importantly, to myself, in this competition, is to make the absolute best out of it and make eight new amazing friends, meet new people and make a lot of beautiful lasting memories!
My hope for this experience is that it will pull me so far out of my comfort zone that nothing else will seem scary. I really do have high hopes that this will make me less shy and help me overcome my social anxiety. If you see me out and about, do not hesitate to stop me and say hi! It would make my day!
To conclude, I would like to extend my appreciation to everyone that has shown me support through this adventure. First, a huge thank you to my wonderful sponsor, Berna Dean Flowers and Gifts, as well as to Susan and Art Barbeau for allowing me to run for their amazing business. A great big thank you to Connie and Art Chartrand for their continued support throughout these last couple of months. You two have been amazing! Another huge great big thank you to my amazing family and friends for encouraging and supporting me. Thank you to my hardworking mother, father and sister who’ve been my saviours these last couple of months, especially helping me fundraise. You are all the absolute best and I don’t know how to ever repay you. To Trapper’s Festival and all who serve on the board, for continuing to put on the best northern festival every year. To all of the beautiful ladies running, for making this the most fun that I’ve ever had. And finally, to Krista Tooley. For putting up with all of us girls. I don’t know how you do it but I am beyond grateful that you do!
I look forward to all of the fun we will have on Trapper’s week. Good luck to all of the fabulous fur queen contestants. You’re all queens to me already! Cheesy, I know. You’ll all do super! See you all around!