Up close at the rodeo

21st annual Bullriding in the Rockies Friday, July 19th

Greg Geiger prefers a small rodeo to a big one, especially when the scaled-down rodeo ropes in the best cowboys and bull fighters on the circuit as with Invermere’s Bullriding in the Rockies, one of the biggest annual fundraisers for the Columbia Valley Rockies.

“You’re right up close with the animals and the bull riders and that,” he said. “The people like it because it’s so up close and personal.”

Compare that to the Calgary Stampede or other rodeos where the stands are packed so full that the massive bulls are so distant they look small enough to crush between your fingers.

Now imagine the exact same caliber of show with the same World Professional Bullriders but with a fraction of the audience and with a seat so close you can’t help wincing when an overzealous bull rams into the fence.

That’s what you’ll get at the 21st annual Bullriding in the Rockies show on Friday, July 19th, where Mr. Geiger said there are no bad seats, and where one of the top two rodeo clowns in the world will perform.

The Valley’s rodeo is such a cozy gathering that he said you might even get the chance to meet the riders at the dance as many of them stick around for the weekend.

With tickets limited to just under 2,000 and with the rodeo selling out most years, Mr. Geiger recommends that people snap up their tickets soon. Tickets are $36 for adults and $28 for students and seniors. If you lasso yours by Saturday, July 13th, you’ll save $4. Tickets are available at Invermere Home Hardware Building Centre, at the Brisco General Store and at Mountainside Market in Fairmont and Radium, and at the Pioneer office.

The family-friendly evening also includes a Cowboy Dinner ($12), a dance with music by KixxSin and the opportunity to test your prowess against a mechanical bull.

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