As of Wednesday, June 29, 2016
GRANGEVILLE The Border Days Rodeo is a little different this year — as it falls July 1-2-3 and not on the Fourth for the first time anyone can remember — but as a whole it’s as big as ever and Family Night this Friday night, July 1, figures to be huge.
“We have 285 professionals and 50 locals entered, and 335 entries is a record number of entries,” Border Days committeeman Brad Arnzen said. “This year the big number comes from speeding up the rodeo and not having one on July 4.”
Arnzen highlighted the 25 entries in the saddle bronc riding event, pointing out 13 are set to ride on Friday night. Because July 4 falls after the weekend, rodeo attendance would figure to be light. But running a July 4 show also would figure to put Grangeville in competition with rodeos in places such as Hailey, as well as Vale, Ore. and Toppenish, Wash.
Women’s events — headlined by 47 pro entries in breakaway roping and 51 in barrel racing — feature prominently.
So do the other timed events, parts of which are scheduled to be blitzed out during slack time Friday morning, July 1. On the sheet for that first session are 12 of 30 for tiedown roping, 18 of the 47 for breakaway, five of 21 for steer wrestling, 18 of 38 for team roping, and 19 of the 51 for barrel racing, for a total of 72 set to go in rapid succession starting at 10 a.m. Friday, July 1.
The local team roping slate filled fast, the regular number of local barrel racers have signed up and there’s one new event this year: instead of the calf scramble, organizers are running a chicken scramble.
“This year we’ll turn loose three chickens with all those kids with three different money values on them, and hopefully the kids will be able to catch them,” Arnzen said. “Hopefully the chickens won’t get away.”
For the official entrants, there’s a total of $13,800 in added money this year — $1,000 more than last year. It’d take a bit of luck for someone to top the payout of $2,200 to last year’s top bull rider, as only one posted a qualified ride. There figure to be $1,000 top payouts in multiple events, with barrel racing looming large on the women’s side and saddle bronc on the men’s.
The rough stock riders are ready to rumble as follows: for bareback, there are four on Friday, one on Saturday, three on Sunday and eight in total; for saddle bronc, 13 Friday, six Saturday, six Sunday and 25 total; for ranch bronc, one Friday, two Saturday, four Sunday and seven total; and for bulls, six Friday, three Saturday, three Sunday and 12 total.
The main events are set for 7 p.m. Friday night, 6 p.m. Saturday night and 6 p.m. Sunday night. Admission is $10 regular, $5 ages 6-12 and free for those younger.
Friday morning slack time admission is free to all.