Outside Circle by Jan Swan Wood: WNFR proud moments, ugly sweaters, help for fire victims, Joe Wolter clinic | TSLN.com

Outside Circle by Jan Swan Wood: WNFR proud moments, ugly sweaters, help for fire victims, Joe Wolter clinic

Winter solstice has passed and the days will start having more daylight now. I don't know that they can get any longer, what with daily work and then still unpacking and trying to figure out where everything goes. I swear, the next move I make will be in a body bag. More good news is that my grandboys are here for the duration of Christmas vacation from school. What an adventure to explore the place at last! Seeing things through a seven and nearly six year old's eyes is good for my heart too. Them and their Daddy are hoping for enough snow to be able to be pulled around in the calf sled by his saddle horse! I guess I could stand enough for that.

The WNFR is over and everyone has probably gotten home and gotten back into whatever routine they have there. I'm sure pleased with our local talent. Harding County is still beaming over Chason Floyd, Buffalo, S.D. steer wrestler, doing so well at the finals. He split third/fourth/fifth/sixth in round one, was second in round four, won round eight and split fourth/fifth/sixth in round nine.

South Dakota's sweetheart of barrel racing, Oelrich's Lisa Lockhart, was third in the NFR aggregate and sixth in 2017 earnings. She won round five, was fourth in round seven and fifth in round eight. She and Louie always carry our hearts with her.

Team roper Jr. Dees of Aurora, S.D., was second in round one and three, and fourth in round six. It was Jr's first trip to the WNFR, and he just graduated from high school in 2016. I think we'll see a lot more of him at the finals.

Regional bareback riders did well too. JR Vezain, Cowley, Wyo., was 5th in round 1, won round 6, split fourth and fifth in round 8, split fifth and sixth in round 9, and was 6th in round 10. Ty Breuer, Mandan, N.D., won round 4, and split fourth and fifth in round 10. Steven Dent, Mullen, Neb., was second in round 9, and split first and second in round 10.

Saddle bronc man Brody Cress of Hillsdale, Wyo, was on the board a lot with third in round 2, second in round 4, split second/third/fourth in round 5, second in round 6, split sixth in round 7 and was fourth in round 10.

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Steer wrestler Ty Erickson, Helena, Mont., was second in round 3, split fourth/fifth in round 4, was 5th in round 5, second in round 6, split fifth/sixth in round 8, and was fourth in round 10.

Team ropers also made the board, Billings, Mont. had rep Clay Tryan splitting first/second in round 5, third in round 6, and splitting first and second in round 8. Dustin Bird of Cut Bank, Mont., won round 2.

Meteetsee, Wyo's Dusty Tuckness, was named PRCA bullfighter of the year. If you watch him in the arena, you can certainly see why. What an honor to have the contestants vote to not only have him at the finals but also to win this award.

The area around beautiful Broadus, Mont., holds the distinction of having three of the area's high school students gaining notoriety in the rodeo ranks in 2017. First, in July, Houston Brown won the NHSRA saddle bronc title. Then in the fall, Jess Lockwood won the PBR World Championship. The trifecta came when fourteen year old high school freshman, Garrett Cunningham, won the Jr. NFR saddle bronc title. Good job guys!

There will be an Ugly Sweater Barrel and Pole Jackpot on December 30 at Wright, Wyo. The office will open at 7 a.m., exhibitions will run from 8-12, entries close at noon, then the futurity will start at 1 p.m., followed by the open and novice youth. At 3 p.m. will be the pole exhibitions followed by the 3D pole bending. For more info call Heidi at 307-299-3198 or Janie at 605-210-3179.

The South Dakota Stockgrowers have estimated that at least 20 families have lost fences, winter grass and hay from the 50,000+ acre Legion Lake fire this month. They want to help and need to hear from you if you had losses. To report, you can call Custer/Fall River County Farm Service Agency at 605-745-5716 or you can call the S.D. Stockgrowers to be directed to resources available at 605-342-0429. You can donate money directly to a fund set up at any First Interstate Bank in the region. If you'd rather mail it, send your check to: First Interstate Bank, c/o Legion Lake Fire Fund, 333 W. Blvd, Ste 100, Rapid City, SD 57702. My heart goes out to everyone involved.

The Gillette College Rodeo banquet will be Feb. 2, 5:30 p.m. at the Gillette College Pronghorn Center. There will be a social hour, dinner and silent/live auction, all hosted by the rodeo team.

There will be a Joe Wolter horsemanship and cow working clinic on February 2-4 at University of Western Montana/Dillon. Joe is a great horseman, teacher and person, and is very easy to learn from. Call Eric Hoffman at 406-925-1499 for information.

Well, that's my cold, windy circle for another week. I hope you had a wonderful, blessed Christmas and that you are looking forward to 2018. On a good note, it's easy to change a 7 to an 8 on a check when you write it wrong. Have a blessed week.