I did not have any cowboy boots or hat to wear, but I did manage to attend the rodeo this past weekend. Let's check that off the life list, thank you.
The California Cowboys Professional Rodeo Association (CCPRA) was having a two-day event in Boonville as part of the Mendocino County Fair and Apple Festival. We made the 1.5 hour drive inland via Highway 1 and Mountain View Road. Boonville is a small town and the rodeo was on the football field at the fair grounds.
My knowledge of rodeo was limited to what I had seen on TV or in the movies, angry horses and bulls trying to roust off the person on their back. The event started with a grand entry of the flags as well as the cowboys and cowgirls. After that, events got underway. We ended up seeing the following: bareback bronc riding, calf roping, break away roping (women), barrel racing (women), steer wrestling, team roping (mens and womens) and then the bull riding. Here are some photos from the rodeo.
|Bull riding ... or in this case, cowboy falling from the bull.|
Thinking back to the events that I saw, I enjoyed the events where the rider had to show skill with their horse, for example the barrel racing and the roping. The roping is particularly impressive, because not only does the cowboy have to control their horse, they also need to be coordinated enough to rope a calf. It just seemed more elegant than the rest of the activities.
I am not sure what motivates someone to try to stay on top of a 2,000 pound bull for eight seconds (sometimes called the most dangerous eight seconds in sports), but it does make for quite a spectacle to watch.