Up and Down El Rio Blanco: Cowboy up!

“Hey Bobby, I have a complaint,” my friend said as I walked into his business the other day.“And what’s that?” I asked. I appreciate constructive criticism, especially from those I consider mentors, like my complaining friend.“What’s Range Call about?” My friend asked. Before I could answer his first question, he asked, “What’s the reason Range Call started?”“The rodeo,” I said, answering both questions.“You’re right, the rodeo, so why wasn’t there anything in the paper about the rodeo?” he asked.“There was,” I said confidently.“You have results of the ranch rodeo but just two sentences about the CPRA rodeo, the Colorado Professional Rodeo Association rodeo,” my friend, who once made his living as a professional cowboy, said. He suggested we need to give the rodeo more coverage. “It’s a dying sport,” he said. “There are too many other rodeos. Steamboat has a big rodeo on the fourth, Greeley has one and it costs a lot of money to put one on,” my friend said.I agreed with my friend but also have my own opinions why rodeo is a “dying” sport. Rodeo cowboys, in my humble opinion, are some of the most physically fit athletes in the world. My rodeo friend is more than 70 years old and still has the kind of muscle definition in his calves one would see in a high school triple jumper.It takes a special person to sit astride a 2,000 pound bull and hold on with only one hand and your legs, or a bucking horse with or without the advantage of a saddle, or leaping off the wrong side of a running horse onto a running steer to grab it by the horns and twist until all four hooves are pointed in the air. Professional cowboys are a rare breed, that’s why I think rodeo is a “dying” sport.Again, I agree with my friend and believe our professional rodeo needs more press, so we’ve published another photo in this edition, including this one taken from across the arena at one of this year’s rodeos. Let this be a range call to all professional cowboys out there to come and be a part of the longest running rodeo (126 years) in the state of Colorado next year.Maybe my friend will lend his rodeo expertise to the rodeo committee and add a little extra prize money for the cowboys and we’ll do a better job of covering the CPRA rodeos.
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Congratulations to all the champions mentioned in this week’s edition. Jordan Brown winning a gold medal at the FCCLA national leadership conference, Meeker’s 8-10 undefeated season and back to back league champs, as were the Meeker Magic girls’ softball team, former Meeker student Cody Pfau won a national wrestling title in Fargo, N.D., and Rangely’s Brittany Babineaux, Torie Slagle, Shelby Neiberger, Justyne Dembowski and Alexis Wiley for setting the bar for the upcoming fair.