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News and Notes from the Rodeo Trail, Oct. 31

by ProRodeo.com | Nov 01, 2016

ProRodeoLive will be broadcasting from the RAM Columbia River Circuit Finals Rodeo in Yakima, Wash. At 7 p.m. (PT) Nov. 5.

Gary Lee Higlin, the husband of PRCA secretary/timer Jackie Higlin, and father of PRCA steer roper Ryan Rochlitz, died Oct. 28, at Hospice of the Hills in Rapid City, S.D., after a 13-year battle with cancer. He was 64.

After a three-month promotion by Las Vegas Events, four performers have been selected by fans to sing the national anthem at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo presented by Polaris RANGER in Las Vegas Dec. 1-10. There were two categories for performers to choose from: open and youth. From Sept. 26 through Oct. 6, the fans voted for their favorites. Molly Gaynor is the youth winner, while Allie Burgett, Lerin Thomas and Nick Neu are the open category winners.

California Rodeo Salinas’ 2017 poster commemorating a vintage image of trick rider Edith Happy Connelly, who was not only a favorite performer at the California Rodeo Salinas, but also the rodeo secretary for many years. The Happy Family worked in several areas of California Rodeo Salinas, still supports the association to this day and was inducted into the CRS Hall of Fame in 2011. Connelly is also an inductee in both the ProRodeo Hall of Fame and National Cowboy Hall of Fame. The poster captures Connelly in her signature move, the Hippodrome Stand, and was debuted at the annual Stockholders Dinner. The poster is an intricate pencil sketch by local artist Ruth Deoudes.

Four bucking horses and two bucking bulls have been awarded Animal of the Year and Animal of the Finals in the Badlands Circuit. Bareback Horse of the Year was given to Sutton Rodeos’ American Graffiti. Bareback Horse of the Badlands Circuit Finals was awarded to Korkow Rodeos’ En Vogue. Sutton Rodeo’s South Point won top saddle bronc of the year, and Korkow Rodeos’ Duck Butter was voted top saddle bronc of the finals. Bull of the Year was given to Sutton Rodeos’ Tea Time, and bull of the finals went to Bailey Rodeo’s High Maintenance.

The Oregon Trail Rodeo committee members recently presented a $2,500 check to the Morrison Cancer Center in Hastings, Neb. The check represents the proceeds from the rodeo’s Tough Enough to Wear Pink Night at this year’s rodeo.

The Greeley (Colo.) Stampede put more than $980,000 back into the community after the 95th annual event last summer. The donations from the 2016 event are nearly 10 times that of previous years, according to a news release from the rodeo. The Greeley Stampede annually partners with community organizations to help with fundraising and awareness campaigns. Donors are assigned event tasks in exchange for the donations, which go to help with community outreach and to make capital improvements such as the Buckle Club and Aven’s Village. This year’s partnerships included designated rodeo nights, such as Tough Enough to Wear Pink, which benefits the North Colorado Medical Center’s Breast Center. Events such as the Western art show, golf tournament and Big Buckle Ball benefit the Stampede Foundation, which in turn offers education-based scholarships to local youth. The Weld (County) Food Bank also partnered with the Stampede to offer the CanSculpture Challenge. During the event, a discount that was offered on the carnival wristband in exchange for canned foods helped collect more than 500 pounds of food.

QUOTE OF THE WEEK
I’m my own biggest competition in Vegas. There are 14 other great bull riders, and the rankest bulls in the world. It’s going to be a riding contest with my style and the way I ride – the only person to stand in the way of my third buckle is me.

-Two-time defending World Champion Bull Rider Sage Kimzey

Courtesy of PRCA