art of the cowgirl worlds greatest horsewoman competition cowgirl magazine
Photo by Nicole Poyo.……

After its successful inaugural event in January 2019, Art of the Cowgirl is back for its second year January 24-26, 2020, at Corona Ranch & Rodeo Grounds in Phoenix, Arizona. The 2019 event showcased Western female artists and horsewomen, and emphasized the power of the cowgirl spirit. Art of the Cowgirl 2020, sponsored by COWGIRL, plans to do the same, with the help of the World’s Greatest Horsewoman.

“Art of the Cowgirl is driven by horsewomen and I wanted to produce an elite cow horse event for women like me who come from ranching backgrounds and dream of taking a cow down the fence in Fort Worth, yet still respect the working cowboy, cowgirl and ranch horse,” says Art of the Cowgirl Event Director Mesa Pate.

A new addition to Art of the Cowgirl this year is the World’s Greatest Horsewoman competition. Presented by Western Horseman, the competition will give women the chance to show their equestrian skills individually, similar in structure to the American Quarter Horse Association’s former event Battle in the Saddle. The World’s Greatest Horsewoman will have four phases—herd work, rein work, steer stopping and cow work—and cowgirls will be judged based on each phase. With these categories, the competition hopes to reward the most well-rounded cowgirl.

“For a lot of horsewomen, horsemanship is their art, and they’re interested in reined cow horse because it embraces ranching,” says Pate. “They may not have the opportunity to compete due to finances and the long distance to travel to shows. The World’s Greatest Horsewoman is a unique way to tip our hat and show respect to working ranch cowgirls and the horses they’ve trained. We look forward to developing a longstanding relationship with NRCHA, because there are a lot of ranching men and women trying to get to a high level in their horsemanship and compete at reined cow horse events.”

If you think you’re the world’s greatest horsewoman, you better act fast; the competition is open to 25 female competitors. Entries for the World’s Greatest Horsewoman open October 15th, and the entry fee is $250.

After entry, horsewomen will have a few months to prepare; the World’s Greatest Horsewoman and the all women ranch rodeo will take place January 23 and 24 at John Volken Academy Ranch arena in Gilbert, Arizona. Then, the final rounds of both competitions will be held January 25 at Art of the Cowgirl at Corona Ranch.

The top five horse and rider duos in the competition will compete for cash and other prizes, along with the chance to compete at the National Reined Cow Horse Association’s World’s Greatest Horseman, being held February 13-22, 2020, in Fort Worth, Texas.

Be sure to pick up your tickets for Art of the Cowgirl to catch all the horsewomen action, and to show your support for Western female artists. One-day tickets are $65, and three-day passes are $175. Tickets can be purchased here, and you can learn more about the event at

About Art of the Cowgirl
Founded by Montana horsewoman Tammy Pate in 2018, Art of the Cowgirl is a three-day gathering that celebrates cowgirl artisans and their contributions to the western lifestyle and culture through discussions, demonstrations, rodeo and ranch horse competitions, an art auction and trade show, and an elite ranch horse sale. Proceeds from the event fund educational fellowships that unite emerging artists with masters in their respective fields. The gathering will be held January 24-26, 2020, at Corona Ranch & Rodeo Grounds in Phoenix, Arizona.

Art of the Cowgirl is sponsored by Western Horseman, COWGIRL magazine, Wrangler, Montana Silversmiths, Preifert, The Hideout Lodge & Guest Ranch, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and Clarke Butte Ranch.