Kids’ Western Festival: A fun free-for-all

Published 7:40 pm Tuesday, August 23, 2022

The Pike County Cattlemen’s Association Rodeo is set for Friday and Saturday nights at Cattleman Park.

The rodeo begins at 7:30 both nights. Gates open at 5 p.m. on Friday and at 4 p.m. on Saturday for the Western Festival for kids that will begin at 5 p.m. Admission to the Western Festival is free.

B.B. Palmer, Pike County Cattlemen publicity chairman, said, according to rodeo legend, three decades or more ago, a Colorado rodeo queen introduced mutton bustin’ at the National Western Stock Show in Denver.

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The original mutton bustin’ kids ended up with a mouthful of dirt and a handful of stinky wool. But, those original mutton busters laid the groundwork for mutton bustin’ as the kids’ bull ridin’ rodeo event.

“Mutton bustin’ is the bull riding event for kids,” Palmer said. “Kids will be lined up way back to get their chance at riding a buckin’ sheep. They’ll come out of the chute in a mighty big hurry.

“Mutton bustin’ is exciting for the kids and it’s exciting to watch. The kids’ hopes will be to stay on and have a good ride. Either way, it will be an experience they will long remember.”

The Western Festival will have something for every kid. There are stick horses to ride, cows to milk, horseshoes to pitch, cactus to throw and longhorns to lasso.’

“The shooting gallery is a lot of fun and so is barrel racing,” Palmer said. “There will be animals to pet and faces to be painted. The Western Festival is fun for kids and the entire family. We are expecting a lot of kids and know everybody will have fun.”

The Pike County Cattlemen invite kids and their families to come to Cattleman Park on Saturday, enjoy the Western Festival and stay for the PCCA Rodeo. The concession stand will be open and vendors will have items of the cowboy kind available. The rodeo will be a one-stop for family, fun and food.