Saturday (July 6) is the final night of the 69th Rodeo of the Ozarks in Springdale and Boyd Polhamus is the man behind the microphone who guides spectators through all the activities.
“You need to give them their $20 to $30 worth of live entertainment and we are a live venue,” Polhamus said.
There’s a lot people don’t know about Polhamus. For instance, Polhamus researches for hours before each performance to learn the history behind each rodeo athlete. He compares his job to that of Jay Leno and David Letterman.
“These are all my friends, they are on my couch so to speak but my job is to make you feel like you know them better,” Polhamus said. “So, that you care about them more, then next time they nod their head or the next time they walk in and out of the arena you have a different reason other than just the fact that somebody came here to get bucked off a bull,” Polhamus said.
Polhamus has been a rodeo announcer for almost three decades. However, he’s been at the Rodeo of the Ozarks for 15 years.
Rodeo Chairman Tex Holt said he was recommended by other other rodeos. Holt said he went to Las Vegas to recruit Polhamus.
“He’s got that kind of reputation and he loves to come to Springdale,” Holt said. “He could go to other rodeos we know that but he enjoys Springdale and he’s done an outstanding job.”
Holt said he hopes Polhamus stays at the Rodeo of the Ozarks for a long time.
“He has a lot of humor and he can work with anybody and he likes to keep the crowd really feeling good, happy and boy this is fun,” Holt said.
Polhamus does his job on his horse with a microphone in hand. He said making sure spectators have an unforgettable experience is his passion.
“I’ve never worked a day in my life, I’ve always said that,” Polhamus said. “If I was watching the rodeo I’ve been sitting next to you going, ‘hey man check out this guy, he’s won the world title three times, he’s been in the final and this horse oh my god is wicked keep your eyes on him.'”
Polhamus averages 175 performances a year.