The Cranbrook Pro Rodeo has wrapped up its 26th year, and organizer Dallas Mackie said it was another great weekend.
“We had really great weather, excellent crowds and great cowboys,” she said.
Mackie couldn’t pick out just one highlight for the whole weekend, but said she was happy things went smoothly for the entire three days. She estimates about 1,800 people came through the gates, and the crowd was rivaled only by the number of cowboys that took part this year.
“We had massive entries,” she said.
This year there was one local barrel racer, which Mackie said doesn’t happen all that often. The rodeo is a stop on the professional circuit and is slated towards the end of the season.
On the Canadian Professional Rodeo Association circuit, every dollar earned counts as a point towards qualifying for the Canadian Finals Rodeo in Edmonton. That event is coming up from November 7 to 11 in Edmonton and only the top point earners qualify.
With Cranbrook’s event being so late in the season, participating cowboys often need every point they can get.
“It’s an important stop,” Mackie said. “This is one of the last stops.”
This year one participant celebrated a milestone. Shelby Cummings has been performing her trick riding at the rodeo for the past 10 years. Now 21, Cummings began her Cranbrook Pro Rodeo career when she was just 10 years old.
“She’s been here every year since,” Mackie said. “She’s an awesome trick rider.”
Cummings has a local connection, too. Her grandparents still live here and her Mom grew up in the Cranbrook area.
Mackie said once again the rodeo had a great collection of sponsors and volunteers – some of which have been participating in all 26 years of the rodeo.
“That’s what makes the rodeo work,” she said.
Volunteers account for the majority of the workforce at the rodeo whether they are selling tickets, running the concession or working with the animals behind the scenes.