VIDEO: Little cowfolk test their mettle at Silver Creek Youth Rodeo

Published 6:38 pm Tuesday, January 24, 2023

The first series of the second annual Youth Rodeo was held at the Silver Creek Equestrian Center on Saturday.

The equestrian center is a family-owned business in Bovina, run by Laura Leigh Shivers. She said they are holding the competition to encourage children to be active in rodeo and to make an event that provides opportunities for family and friends to bond.

“We’re really just wanting to get our youth back into stuff that’s outside and healthy and getting the families together,” Shivers said. “Because it’s definitely a family-oriented event. It just brings everybody together and brings you outside and gets you going and keeps you going.”

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The rodeo will take place over the course of three months in three series. Contestants receive points and cash rewards at each series within each of the three age groups. At the end of the third series, the winner from each age group will be awarded a trophy belt buckle.

The rain on Saturday didn’t deter an enthusiastic crowd of attendees, and Shivers said she was pleased with the turnout.

“It was amazing. We had over 400 people at the rodeo. It just blew me out of the water: the turnout and the support that the community and the people around us gave,” she said. “(They’re) supporting the youth and getting them out of the house and off the TVs and the phones.”

Of the 400 attendees, more than 100 were children participating in the competition. Events at the rodeo included mutton busting, barrel racing, break-away roping and goat ribbon-tying, among many others.

During the mutton-busting portion of the event, contestants climbed onto the backs of wooly sheep inside a gate. A timer would start and the young riders would cling to their mount as best they could as it scurried about the arena. Points were awarded based on the length of time a rider stayed off the ground.

Shivers also said she wanted to thank the local businesses that helped make the event possible, including RiverHills Bank, the Gumbo Pot, Cannon Honda and Toyota and Progressive Tractor of Tallulah.

The next series will take place at the equestrian center on March 4. The third and final series will be held on a to-be-determined date in April.

For more information about the coming series in the rodeo and other events, visit the Facebook page for Silver Creek Equestrian Center.