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Wednesday, June 26, 2013

lot the Ogden Pioneers Days Rodeo

It’s getting closer just a couple of weeks more and it will start. The Ogden Pioneer Days Rodeo is the event of the summer around here. It’s more than a rodeo there is are art show, craft fairs, farmers market, custom car shows, parades and more. I have not ridden in a rodeo since 1967 but I have not missed many rodeos. I go to watch and remember when. You don’t have to be a top hand to get in the rodeo just be foolish or drunk enough to pay the entry fee. There is one thing about it you will remember it for the rest of your life. I remember my first rodeo; some friends that I was hanging out with were going to one of the small town rodeo in “Corinne, Utah June of 1965”. Chris, one of my friends had entered the rodeo and he kind of talked the rest of us into joining him.  

At this point I had not rode in any rodeo but I had rode a number of green broke  horses and a few wild pony and they did buck a bit. So I was not overly worried about paying the ten dollar entry plus the five per event fee you just had to be in the top four to get your money back. I sign up for the saddle bronco and the bareback events. Now my wallet was twenty buck lighter, and I was starting to be concerned about the missing weight, but they gave me a piece of paper with a number on it and a pair of safety pin to put it on my back. We help each other pin on our numbers then we walk around the stock pin and look them over then went and looked around the vender booths. Now! Those numbers on our back were targets all the girls around there came running like a swarm of bee. We bought a lot of cotton candy and soda pop.

 Then came the call to boots and saddles and the lineup for the grand entry, I was all deck out with girls hair ribbons on both arms, this was starting to be fun. We rode around the arena smiling and waving to the crowd. We left the arena and are back of the chutes get ready to ride. The first rider is out and we all climb the fence to watch, he gets a 63, not bad but not that good the stock are rank and he made the buzzer. Eight second is sure a long time. I am getting second thought about this but Chris gets me ready taping my wrist and boots tops, you do that to keep them from fly off, the boots that is,  he done this a time or two and is good at it. He tells me I can do it. I empty my pockets and take off my watch, it time to get on that beast. Chris is in my ear telling me just what to do but I can't hear him, my mind is screaming “what the hell are you doing”.  The horse I drew was Sun Devil, a golden colored buckskin. I climb up on the bucking chute stall and start to mount. That critter is a snorting and blowing, kicking the heck out of the stall. He settles down a bit and I get on and got screw down. I give them the nod and they turn us out. Where is that pick up rider, where in that buzzer, it’s been over an hour hasn't it, I see the crowd, I see the sky. I see the ground, and then I hear that wonderful sound and see an arm with a way off this thing. The announcer says great ride folks a 78 for Roy from Ogden give him a big hand.

My head is buzzes and every bone in my body hurts, I did not know whether I was up side right or what, I could hear the crowd yelling, maybe I had done something good, I wave to the crowd and smile, I found my way to the fence. And climb over. Then it hit me I got one more ride coming. Oh shit, one was enough.

When the night was over I had won the saddle bronco and got 100 dollar and a silver plated belt buckle and the name and numbers to a dozen girls. Chris won the all around and got 500 dollars and a silver belt buckle, he never said how many number he got. I rode in a few more rodeos over the next two years and only won one more time at Elko Nevada in the summer of 1966.  In 1967 I rode demonstration saddle bronco at the Ogden Pioneers Days Rodeo, you can’t win any money but you get in the rodeo free this was my last Rodeo.  Chris went on to become the NFR national bareback champ in 1976 and a great singer and song writer. Me I just went on.  Every time I hear of a rodeo I want to go and rodeo I guess you could say that I'm hooked on that eight second ride.
 This my friend Chris

Thank you for coming by and your comments God Bless


Martha J. M. Orlando said...

Wow, Roy, I'm really impressed! You sure had the daredevil in you, and great memories you've shared here. Liked the "Addicted to Danger" by your friend, Chris, too. It rocks!
Oh, and so do you! :)
Blessings, my friend!

Roy Durham said...

I sure wish Chris was still with us

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