Dani Loeb Participates in the FFA Alumni Championship Rodeo
U.S. Freestyle Aerial Ski Team member and native Alabamian, Dani Loeb, participated in her first rodeo on April 30 and May 1. Loeb performed the clown bit both nights at the Wetumpka FFA Alumni Championship Rodeo, acting as Annie Oakley’s last descendant the first night and doing a Duck Dynasty bit the second night. “It was an exciting weekend, and it was great to see all of my friends from home,” said Loeb.
The rodeo was a Future Farmers of America (FFA) charity event with riders from the International Professional Rodeo Association. The proceeds went to Wetumpka High School’s FFA Chapter and the WHS agricultural department. Loeb spent much of her childhood in Wetumpka, as it is her mother’s hometown. Her mom was also a horse trainer, so she has always been around the rodeo, but this was her first time participating in one.
Surprisingly Loeb noticed a few distinct similarities between rodeo and skiing. “There are many groups, like show horses and rodeo, that remind me of different skiing disciplines..”
Leading up to the rodeo, Loeb toured local schools in the county with the reigning Miss Rodeo USA, Kylee Campbell. Loeb noted that not many kids in that area have been skiing before, as the closest resort is in North Carolina. When she walked in to the schools with her skis, many of the kids responded with, “That’s a ski?! How do you even stand on that thing?” Loeb helped demonstrate that even being from a small town, you can achieve whatever you put your mind to. “I wanted to show them that no matter what their dreams are, they can achieve them if they work hard,” Loeb explained.
Loeb is a shining example of someone who has achieved those dreams. She comes from a gymnastics background and was recruited to the team when she was training at a gym in Texas. Before being recruited to the team, Loeb had only ever skied once during spring break as a small child. She is now the first Alabamian to make the U.S. Ski Team.
Follow Dani Loeb’s journey from Alabama to aerials via her Instagram @dani.loeb