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Happy Canyon 2018 Princesses

Welcome Ladies!

The Happy Canyon Board of Directors is proud to announce Tayler Craig and Sequoia Conner, both of Pendleton, as the 2018 Happy Canyon Princesses. They will serve as the 2018 ambassadors for the Happy Canyon Night Show, Oregon’s official outdoor night pageant.

“We are excited to have these two well-rounded, talented young women represent Happy Canyon this next year,” said Happy Canyon President Corey Neistadt. “Their family roots run deep in Happy Canyon, so we’re honored to have them serve as our representatives throughout the region.”

Tayler Craig

Craig is the daughter of Fermore Craig Jr. and Rachel Hoptowit, and is an enrolled member of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation. She is a graduate of Pendleton High School, where she played basketball, softball and volleyball, and spent many summers playing AAU basketball and ASA softball.

Craig currently works at the Yellowhawk Tribal Health Clinic and attends Blue Mountain Community College. Her hobbies include photography, drawing, beading and riding and training her 17-year-old quarter horse, Lane. This past year Craig worked side by side with her mother to bead her regalia. She was also able to enjoy the fruits of her labor riding her horse Lane in the Dress-Up Parade, Westward Ho Parade and Pilot Rock parade. Craig walked away with the top honor at last year’s American Indian Beauty Pageant during the Pendleton Round-Up.

Craig and her family have a deep connection with Happy Canyon and the Pendleton Round-Up. Her Aunt Elaine Hoptowit beads the Happy Canyon bags the princesses use each year. These bags have been used for many years and will be quite the honor for Craig to use one of them herself this year. Many of Craig’s family members are past Happy Canyon royalty, including Rosaline Kanine (1932), Joyce Hoptowit (1958), Sharon Hoptowit (1963), Mary Craig (1981), Sandra Craig (1983), Bridget Kalama (1987), Lucy John (1998), Stacy McKay (1998), Rosaline Hines (2005), and Josephine Penney (2015).

Craig’s future plans are to go on to a four-year school, then a two-year medical school program to become a Physician’s Assistant.



Sequoia Conner

Conner, 18, is the daughter of Marcus Conner & Terri Carnes. Her dad and brother are enrolled members of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, and Conner and her mother are enrolled members of the San Carlos Apache Tribe in San Carlos, Ariz. Conner is a graduate of Pendleton High School, where she participated in basketball and softball. She served two years on the school’s Native American Board of Representatives as a member at large and then as Secretary her second year.

Conner currently works at Papa Murphy’s Pizza while attending Blue Mountain Community College. Her hobbies include reading, traveling, beading, photography, listening to music and hanging out with her family. Conner dedicated most of her summer in 2017 to traveling to the different parades in the region to represent her Native American community and support her two cousins, Gabriella Lewis and Virginia Conner, the 2017 Happy Canyon Princesses.

The Conner side of the family has participated in the Happy Canyon show since the early 1900s. Conner’s roles in the show include cast member on top of scenery, welcome dance, wedding party and pow wow dancer. There have been multiple family members who have reigned either as a Round-Up Queen or Happy Canyon Princess, including Virginia Wilkenson as Round-Up Queen in 1948, Leah Conner as Round-Up Queen in 1952, Anna Jane Wilkenson as Happy Canyon Princess in 1958-59, Ashleigh Wolf as Happy Canyon Princess in 2002, Crystal Pond as Happy Canyon Princess in 2006, Monice Moses as Happy Canyon Princess in 2007, Appollonia Saenz as Happy Canyon Princess in 2016, Gabriella Lewis as Happy Canyon Princess in 2017, and Virginia Conner as Happy Canyon Princess in 2017.

Conner’s future plans are to complete two years at Blue Mountain Community College before transferring to the University of Oregon to obtain a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Management with a minor in Art. After college, she would like to put her Business Management degree to work on the marketing side of business, focusing on nature and/or animals.

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