July jackpots: Cheyenne, Salt Lake, Deadwood highlight month’s last weekend
The month of July started with the lucrative Independence Day run, otherwise known as Cowboy Christmas, and ends with a bang as well, with the conclusions of several high-stakes rodeos.
The week got under way with “The Daddy of ’em All,” the Cheyenne (WY) Frontier Days. One of the richest regular-season rodeos, Cheyenne began its 111th edition with the first of nine performances on July 19. Action wraps up with the final round on July 27. By then, more than 1,800 cowboys and cowgirls will have battled for the whopping purse of more than $850,000. Visitors can see more rodeo action in one day – more than 40 bucking bulls and 70 bareback and saddle bronc riders in each performance – than at any other rodeo.
The Cheyenne Frontier Days, the nine-time and reigning PRCA Large Outdoor Rodeo of the Year, holds daily performances at Frontier Park at 1 p.m. MT each day.
Cheyenne Frontier Days began in 1897 as the “business” plan of Frederick W. Angler. It still holds true to the principles of those early years. The biggest names in today’s national standings are competing in several events for a share of one of the largest purses in rodeo.
While Cheyenne is playing host to the week’s premier event, two other rodeos in relatively close proximity to Wyoming’s state capital also can help fatten a cowboy’s wallet.
The Days of ’47 Rodeo in Salt Lake City, which started July 16, continues through July 24. The rodeo, which pays a generous $12,500 of added money in each event, consists of seven performances. The first three of this week, July 21-23, start at 7 p.m. MT at Energy Solutions Arena. The last performance on July 24 is scheduled to begin at 4 p.m.
The rodeo features the award-winning livestock of Flying U Rodeo Company, led by ProRodeo Hall of Fame stock contractor Cotton Rosser, and Rosser Rodeo Company.
The Deadwood (SD) Days of ’76 Rodeo, about a 300-mile drive northwest of Cheyenne, starts July 24 and runs through July 27. The rodeo, noted for its wooden bucking chutes and old West scenery, has been honored four times as the PRCA’s Small Outdoor Rodeo Committee of the Year and is the four-time and reigning Medium Rodeo Committee of the Year.