October 12, 2016
Cort Sheer isn't one of those "all hat, no cattle," kind of cowboys.
Cherry County located in north central Nebraska is the largest cow county in the nation at 6,010 square miles. According to the 2014 Census of Ag, Cherry County had more than 261,000 head of "cattle and calves."
Cherry County is not only known for it's cattle but also for the hard working men and women ranchers who produce and care for those cattle and the pristine Sandhills that the cattle graze upon.
One of those ranchers is professional cowboy Cort Scheer of Elsmere.
“I’m appreciative of the support. Fans making noise makes it fun. I love to meet the people.” Colt Scheer, saddle bronc rider
Elsmere, population two (four when the kids come home from college) sits next to Goose Creek in the southeast corner of Cherry County.
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Scheer along with his parents, Kevin and Pam, and older brother, Clete, and wife Chancey, ranch just up the road from Elsmere. They run a cow/calf operation with hay meadows along the creek. Sister Kema lives near North Platte, Neb.
Clete and Chancey's daughter Talon is the fifth generation to live on the ranch.
Both Clete and Chancey rodeo, as well. Chancey's father is former World Champion Saddle Bronc rider Robert Etbauer.
Cort graduated from Sandhills Public High School at Dunning in 2005 and first attended Garden City Community College in Kansas earning an Associate of Science Degree. He then went to Montana State one year where he met rodeo people and started to rodeo on a professional level in 2007. He went south again, this time to attend Oklahoma Panhandle State University in Goodwell, where he received a Bachelor Science in agricultural business.
While attending college he was a four-time qualifier to the College National Finals Rodeo.
He qualified for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo five times while a member of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association. In 2014 he ended up second in the world standings of the PRCA.
This past year Cort has left the PRCA and joined the Elite Rodeo Association as have many other rodeo champions. Currently the ERA has around 70 members.
He says one of the encouraging things about the ERA is that "there are only 12 rodeos in 2016" That leaves time to ranch, attend bronc matches and teach at bronc schools. While with the PRCA he was entering more than 100 rodeos per year.
Professional cowboys and cowgirls need sponsors. Cort's are Cinch, Outlaw Buckers and Hoffman Ranch from nearby Thedford.
Scheer travels in a big white van with a 66 Cherry County Nebraska license plate. His traveling partners are ERA saddle bronc riders Wade Sundell of Oklahoma, Chet Johnson from Wyoming and Tyler Corrington of Montana.
Asked if he keeps a history on the bucking horses he said he "used to but kind of know now by experience or asks buddies."
There are several horses that he talks about but his "girlfriend" as he calls her is Lunatic Party. He scored a 91 on her at Calgary in 2014. He says she is an "awesome horse."
Cort said the "meet and greet" before every ERA rodeo gives the fans an opportunity to meet and interact with the cowboys and cowgirls. "Sometimes the ropers let kids sit on their horses." He said that "just meetin' them and being an example of the western heritage" is what he likes best.
"I'm appreciative of the support. Fans making noise makes it fun. I love to meet the people." F