Ride a Horse, Feed a Cowboy
The 12th annual Ride a Horse Feed a Cowboy event is set for August 26 in Hulett, Wyoming
The event consists of an exclusively roughtstock rodeo, with bareback riding, saddle bronc riding, bull riding and ranch bronc riding, with a wild ride to follow.
After the conclusion of the rodeo, a live auction, barbeque and band is provided for entertainment. The most notable aspect of the event is that all proceeds go to benefit someone in need.
Chanda Snook, one of the founders of the event, decided to give back to the community twelve years ago, after an organization held a similar event in Hulett, without using any funds to better the area. “They didn’t give anything back to the community when they left,” she said. “So I wanted to do something that would give back to the community.”
Chanda and her husband, Clint, and two sons, Austin and Taylor “Bug,” are the main producers of Ride a Horse Feed a Cowboy. “Bug always takes entries, Austin and Clint are chute help.” Local announcer, John Costello, lends his voice for the event, while Jackie Tinsley runs the music. Cody Shaw and his partner of choice are the regular pickupmen, while Jim Thybo and Roxee Holloway have been judges from the start. “Roxie is the only female judge,” Snook said.
Though the roughstock rodeo has been the main event in recent years, it wasn’t always that way. Snook said, “It just started out as a ride-in. People rode their horses into town and we had the auction, barbeque and dance. We started the rodeo five years ago.” Three years ago, the ranch bronc riding event was added. “It just looked like something we should try. The boys wanted to do it,” she said. Ranch bronc riding, though not a new event, surged in popularity in recent years.
Since its beginning, Ride a Horse Feed a Cowboy has raised funds to financially aid someone with medical bills or other monetary needs. “I’ve always picked a person to benefit, and then in later years, I’ve tried to help people all year round,” Snook said.
A particularly touching story of a beneficiary is that of Wade Kornemann. The local cowboy, who is also a husband and father, had a grim diagnosis and worse prognosis. Snook tells, “He had brain cancer and we had that benefit for him. It was really bad. They didn’t think he’d live a year. He went to Houston for treatment and he came back the next year as a pickup man. He comes every year to give back.”
This year, the rodeo will benefit a Hulett resident, Roseanne Olson. She has been diagnosed with HER2 breast cancer. “She does a lot for the community and Crook County,” said Snook.
“This year during the rodeo, there’s a tribute to TC Holloway, Roxee’s brother, who was killed in a car wreck. He was killed during the weekend of our rodeo. Everyone is going to wear purple.” TC was the 1997 PRCA Saddle Bronc Riding Rookie of the Year, and died in 2001.
The most exciting part of the event will be the short round of the ranch bronc riding, which is called the “wild ride.” Contestants usually dress up in costumes and put on the best show for the judges to gain more points. Riders are auctioned off in a Calcutta beforehand. More prize money than ever is up for grabs, with $1,500 added in each of the four events. Stock is provided by Burch Rodeo Company from Rozet, Wyoming.
If you would like to enter the rodeo, call Bug at (307) 4290-2273.
If you would like to help sponsor the event, call Chanda at (307) 290-0400.