Hundreds of professional athletes have made their way to Parsons Stadium in Springdale for the 69th Annual Rodeo of the Ozarks. It’s one of the largest outdoor rodeo’s in the world, and there will be numerous events throughout the week.
There will be a parade through downtown Springdale at 3 p.m. Wednesday (July 3). There will also be another parade on at 10 a.m. Saturday. Rodeo events include team roping, saddle bronc riding, barrel racing and calf pinning.
Steve Smith, the rodeo president, says the most popular event is bull riding, because people love watching riders try to hang on for at least eight seconds.
“We feel like we’ve got the best rodeo east of the Rockies, and it`s going to be a great event.” Smith said. “We’ve got the same clowns, the same announcers, the same stock contractor. We’ve got almost exactly the same things as the granddaddy of them all as they have up there in Wyoming at the Cheyenne Rodeo.”
Mutton busting is also a popular event. It allows children, ages four to six, to ride sheep out of the bucking chute and try to hold on for as long as they can.
Gates open at 6 p.m. Wednesday and the rodeo starts at 6:30 p.m. Ticket prices range from $15 – $35.