Saturday, July 10, 2010

Mesquite Rodeo

The night before we left Texas we did a pretty Texan activity.  We went to the rodeo!  I've never been to a rodeo before, but I was really excited when I heard we'd be going at the end of the week.  The cowboys and girls compete two nights in a row and take the aggregate of their scores for the weekend for competition.

There were so many different events - all of which were pretty unbelievable.  First was team lasso.  One member of the team had to lasso the horns and the second had to lasso the back legs to take the calf down.  The team would be penalized for not getting the calf or for only lassoing one leg.

The next event was riding a bucking horse on a saddle.  This event also happened bareback.  The rider had to stay on for at least 8 seconds in order to rank.
Of course, they did bull riding where the rider also had to stay on for at least 8 seconds.  In both of these events, if the rider stayed on, they would then be judged on style!  How they looked riding, whether they kept their hand high enough in the air, etc.

Other events using calves included wrestling - a cowboy rode out beside a calf, had to jump off his horse onto the calf, and then pin it on the ground - and lassoing and tying - where a cowboy rode out beside the calf, lassoed it, jumped off his horse and tied three of its legs together.  Both of these events were timed.  The faster you got the calf down and tied, the better the score.

Cowgirls mostly participated in barrel racing.  This is a timed event where the ladies ride out and around three barrels without knocking them over; fastest one wins, I guess!  There is a five second penalty for each barrel knocked over, so when cowgirls are completing this event in 14 seconds, if you knock over one barrel, you're done.

The most amazing thing we saw though were not these events.  It was monkeys riding dogs herding goats!

Yeah.  You heard right.
I will just let that picture speak for itself.

Lastly, and perhaps my favorite, was that children under 55 pounds and over 4 years of age were allowed to enter into the mutton busting contest.  That means they put a helmet and some pads on a tiny kid and stick them on a sheep, open the gate and see how long they can hang on!
I guess it's got to be pretty safe because it's not that far a fall, but it was still a little crazy to see.  The kid above hardly got out of the gate before falling off his sheep.

Anyway, it was an incredible experience - I never knew people competed in events like these and wanted to share :)  I really enjoyed it!


jennie said...

monkeys riding dog herding goats?? crazy! and i can't imagine strapping some pads on 5 year old and setting them loose on a sheep! oh texas

kayla said...

haha, I'm with Jennie. Too funny! :) I know I haven't kept up a comment trail as comprehensive as your trip's blog trail has been, but I've been reading along with each experience and loving it!