Friday, September 6, 2013

Piikani Youth Rodeo update

Mutton Buster Tasha takes a turn
T. Lucas and C. Davis photos and video
Toni Lucas and Chris Davis, Pincher Creek Voice

The Piikani Youth Rodeo is planned to continue for two more Wednesdays this year, September 11 and 18, starting at about 5:00 pm each of those evenings.  We took in most of the action on Wednesday September 4.  Participation was up considerably from our visit earlier in the summer, with about 35 kids of different ages signed up for one or more of the events.

Attendance is free, as is participating, and everyone is welcome to do either or both.  Volunteers Tyrone Potts and Rodney Big Bull were assisted by Shaylee French, John Adsett, Mel Boerema, Denise, and Jarret Monroe.  Springpoint Colony donated sheep again for the young mutton busters.

A bagged meal is supplied to participants, and the event is very family oriented.

Shaylee and Mary
"This is my first time here," said Shaylee French.  "I think it's a good experience for all of the kids, and definitely a great program."  French has been Barrel racing for a long time. "Since I was old enough to get on a horse, five I think.  I made my first finals when I was six,  almost 20 years now.  I was asked if I would be interested, and I'd never turn somebody down for help.  I learn more every day.  They teach me as much as I teach them."  She said she plans on helping at the Piikani Rodeo for the next two dates and will also be participating in rodeos in Cardston, Great Falls, and Brooks.

Steer rider Lane Goodrider, Currently 4th in IRCA standings

Volunteer Jarrett Monroe was helping out with Barrels and Steer Riding. "I've been out here for the last three or four sessions we've had teaching basic horsemanship, control, teaching them how to bend open their patterns for their horse's warm-up, getting them familiar with their horses, tack and saddles," he explained.

"We'll teach them basic control, and not to be scared of a horse.  How to talk to the horse, and make that horse their friend.  Getting them used to the arena, the rodeo, we're trying to give kids that chance.  As many of them as we can."

"I've been involved with rodeo since I was five years old," Monroe continued.  "I started in kid rodeos, like what we're doing here.  Right from Steer Riding, to Team Roping, Bull Riding, Calf Roping, and Saddle Bronc."

"Back on July 13, I had a bronc rear back in the shoot, and that's how I broke my ankle.  So I've been out of rodeo since July."

"I've won three Indian World Championships now, High School National Finals, I won that, State National Finals, College National finals - I won that in '06. I've been all over and I had a lot of people ask me to help out with the kids, because of all the things I've accomplished from five years old to now."

"If I can get a smile out of a kid because they're riding a horse, that means everything right there."''

Colton Red Young Man, Tiffany Red Young Man, Kansie Blood, Terrance Old Man Chief

Related stories:
Athlete of the day September 6, 2013: Emma English
Piikani Youth Rodeo returns with a renewed sense of purpose

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