Thursday, August 25, 2011

Pincher Creek Pro Rodeo 2011 photos and wrapup

Longview's Barrel Racing Angel Suzanne Depaoli
Chris Davis photos

The Pincher Creek Pro Rodeo ran from Friday, August 19 to Sunday August 21.  Brilliant weather resulted in tremendous crowds for all three days of the event.

Rodeo stars and aspirants vied for cash, CPRA rank, and bragging rights. The stock was better than average this year.  Plenty of cowboys ended up getting very personal with the ground before the weekend was through. Niki Flundra performed her amazing Liberty Horse Act during intermissions.  Several of her students were also showcased as pre-event entertainment.

Lori Cole was the featured entertainment at the Horseshoe Pavilion on Friday and Saturday night, and the place was packed with merrymakers.  The kids calf scramble, sponsored by Windyview Mechanical, was a lot of fun to watch. We saw rising stars like Cooper Zur of Lundbreck prove their mettle.  Some of the local favourites had a disappointing weekend, limping home with no jingle. That's the way rodeo goes.

Making it happen

Rodeo announcer Brett Gardiner kept up a constant stream of patter throughout.  Rodeo clown Rocket Ryan kept the show moving, filling in those awkward moments when things go off-schedule, and generally making a fool of himself to the delight of the audience.  Henk Indenbosch was in charge of sponsor announcements, and sponsorship is what keeps this kind of event alive.  Canadian Professional Rodeo Judges Cam Morris and Tom Barr were kept hopping all weekend.  Pick-up Men Jeff Resh and Wade Grover were probably the busiest of a busy crew, roping the runaways, saving the fallen, and generally taking care of business.

Dr. Bob Ruckman was the attending vet and was also in charge of the rodeo. At the gate I was told "Oh, you're with Bob? That's the golden key."  Bob was kinda busy, so I tried to stay out of his way.  Brett Monea and Dave Sandilands were the Bullfighters, taking on the dangerous task of leading crazed brutes away from their prey.  The Canadian Pro Rodeo Sports Medicine team were on hand as well, with a big trailer designed to cover all possibilities.  Robert Jopp and Betty Algate were the official timers.  The stock used in the event was contracted from Outlawbuckers Rodeo Corporation, Chute 9 Cattle Company, and T and C Cattle Company.  Sandy Paterson looked after sponsorship ("It's all about the sponsors," she said), Rose and Kevin Lang were in charge of Team Roping, Marty Kliensasser and Linda Wollman  organized the Gymkhana), Sussanne and Blaise O'Rourke took on the hurculean task of managing the Cabaret, Aletta Maier organized Beer Gardens), Lynn Levers organized Vendors, Terry Lyster was kept busy on Security detail, and Diane Bown-Oczkowski pulled double duty as the Concessions manager and 4H rep.  A horde of volunteers and employees worked together to pull this off.  It's by far the biggest event Pincher Creek hosts every year.

Here are a couple of slideshows of the weekend for you to enjoy.  Special thanks to Pauline Breeze of Pincher Creek and Natalie Forchuk of West Vancouver, who contributed some of the photos.  Pauline is a seemingly tireless volunteer in our community, and Natalie was back for her second visit to the Pincher Creek Pro Rodeo. 

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