Spring is in the air, and so is the smell of cows. This means one thing in Bozeman, MSU Spring Rodeo. The rodeo is an all weekend event, with championship performances in the evenings and free slack in the mornings. People come from all over Montana to attend, and subsequently, every hotel parking lot, and every campus parking lot, is overrun by pickup trucks and trailers. It really is quite a sight to see. If you’ve never been to a rodeo before, here is the rundown:
The Crowd: A mix of young and old, plaid-clad and not, and a perpetual sea of cowboy hats and boots, both weather-worn and for-show-only. By the end of the night, the ends of the spectrum begin to nod off. In front of me on Saturday night around 10:00PM, four kids and an old man had fallen asleep.
The Events: We’ve got saddle bronc riding, bareback riding, bull riding, tie down roping, steer wrestling, team roping, barrel racing, breakaway roping, and goat tying. On top of all that, you get a banter loving rodeo announcer, talented pickup men, and an annoying but well intentioned rodeo clown complete with Nerf football and suspenders! What’s not to love?
My one complaint about rodeo is the fact that all the participants wear cowboy hats. Now I know it’s part of the outfit, but I feel that it’s hard to form an emotional connection to an athlete of any kind if I can’t see their face. It’s just like football; everyone is dressed the same, and are distinguishable only by name and number. Rodeo team members get even less. They are all wearing the same things and have neither a name on their vest, nor a number. The best you can do is flip through the program all night and try to identity who exactly is in the arena before they leave. Okay, I’m done.
Also, congratulations to our MSU lady bobcats who brought home the national title!!!
All in all, the MSU Spring Rodeo is pretty rad. Something you should definitely not miss!