Rodeo - East vs.West

When I lived back east, I attended a number of rodeos over the years in places like Dayton, Ohio and Louisville, Ky. Held in giant indoor arenas, the basketball court flooring was pulled up to reveal a not so soft dirt bottom for the prerequisite bucking broncos, ferocious bulls, handsome cowboys and gals, and rodeo clowns to perform. Of course, I didn't realize what was missing until I came to Montana.

rodeo

Bronc rider - Labor Day Rodeo - Dillon, MT

 

   When you go to the rodeo in Montana, half the audience knows the contestants by their first name. Or at least the audience knows as much about the skill and accomplishments of the participant as fans know about pro baseball players. You find yourself in a knowledgable crowd and first thing you know you are rooting for a particular rider, or being in awe of the animals they are trying to stay on. The event is not so much a show, an unusual form of entertainment, like a circus, but a serious showdown between rider and beast.

 

Then, there's the Wild Horse Race, which you don't even see back east. No doubt, that's because the majority of ciity slickers who attempted to catch a wild horse would likely leave the arena on  stretchers.

Marian at the Butte Archives

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