The Outside Circle: Don King Days, Circuit Finals, petition to Congress
We took a nice trip over to Sheridan, WY, over the Labor Day weekend and took in Don King Days at Big Horn on Sunday. If you’ve never been there, you really ought to go. We missed the polo matches in the morning, but got to watch the steer roping and bronc riding. Both events are held out in the open in a big field. Folks gather around the edges and sit on their lawn chairs and picnic blankets to watch. Most of the time, the steers and saddle broncs stayed out of the spectators, but they were all ranchy enough to see ’em coming and got out of the way. It’s a whole different way of doing things for us of the modern rodeo culture.
The saddle broncs were saddled in an alley, then let out and moved out into the middle of things where the bronc rider got on them. The broncs were just sure this wasn’t the way it should be done so it did take a little while to get them settled, but that was good watching, too. When the horse was ready, the bronc rider stepped up behind one of the pickup men who had the horse snubbed on its left side, then slid over onto the bronc, set his stirrups and rein, and then they turned them loose.
The broncs were big, stout, drafty-sized horses and could sure buck. I really admired the pickup men and their excellent horses for the job they did. Those big broncs really tried to tow them around and even got up in the pickup man’s saddle occasionally to see better, but those good hands and good horses handled it all. I particularly admired a dark palomino and a red roan at the end of it all. They were just exceptionally good, I thought.
It was sure a cowboy deal, and we enjoyed every minute. The country looked good all the way over and the Big Horns were still sporting a nice snowcap, so it was a nice drive, too. This may be an annual tradition from here on out.
There’s going to be a fundraiser for Cayci Spencer, three-year-old daughter of Joe and Kayla Spencer from Hayes, SD. This little tyke was just diagnosed with a type of leukemia, which fortunately, is very treatable and has a high success rate. The treatments, however, are scheduled to take about three years. That’s a lot of traveling, days missed at work, meals eaten on the road, and motel rooms, so some friends decided that they needed some help and the benefit will be Oct. 9 at 3 p.m. at the Legion Hall in Faith, SD. There will be donated items to auction, a silent auction, and a collection jar there. You can send donated items to Kyle Brink, 17011 Maurine Rd., Faith, SD 57626. If you want to donate money, there’s a fund set up for Cayci at the Farmers State Bank, Box 187, Faith, SD 57626. This young couple has insurance, fortunately, but that can’t help with the seemingly endless trips to treatments and the related expenses, so, please help out any way you can. It would go without saying that your prayers would be appreciated too.
My condolences to the family of Harold Rinehart. This giant of a man raised his family on the ranch north of Highmore, SD, instilling a love for the land, cattle and lifestyle in them. A complete obituary appears elsewhere in this paper. You’ll all be in my thoughts and prayers in the weeks to come.
The United Horsemen has issued a petition to Congress titled “Restore The Horse Industry” that needs signatures right away, plus follow-up phone calls. We all know we need to right the wrong that was rendered the horse industry with the closing of processing plants in the U.S. The GAO study confirmed that the plants need to be re-opened for the sake of the excess horses in the U.S., but our Washington reps are mired in the bog of indecision and apathy. We must show them that we are dedicated and actively seeking to get the ball rolling to save our industry.
The petition calls for the removal of the annual riders from the Ag. Appropriations Bill that prevent USDA inspection on a voluntary fee basis, whereas the processor would pay for the inspection. That would, overnight, allow the horse industry to regain economic value, provide jobs, and alleviate the suffering of thousands of horses abandoned or neglected since the 2007 closing of the processing plants.
Secondly, the petition opposes all measures, such as S 1176, which is the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act, which is aimed at stopping all transport of horses for slaughter, whether bound for Canada or Mexico.
The deadline for signing the petition is Sept. 15, so get right on this, then follow it up with phone calls to your state’s reps in Washington, DC.
The animals “rights” organizations are multi-million dollar entities with rabid, wealthy supporters, so money is also needed to continue this fight in Washington. The HSUS spent over $7.95 million in 2008-09 on lobbying so it’s no wonder they are pulling the strings instead of the people who actually have knowledge and a vested interest in the horse industry.
The United Organizations of the Horse has been fighting this battle for us, so let’s support them and keep them on the front line. They are a non-profit organization and donations are tax deductible. You can check them out online at http://www.United-Horsemen.org or call Dave Duquette at 541-571-7588 or Sue Wallis at 307-680-8515. You can sign the petition online at http://www.petition2congress.com/5015/restore-us-horse-industry/.
Please don’t just sit there and say “somebody ought to do something.” Be that somebody.
The Badlands Circuit Finals Steer Roping was held Sept. 3 at Deadwood, SD. Overall winner was Jesse Tierney, Hermosa, SD with a time of 79.6 on five head. His old Dad, Paul Tierney, placed second with an 85.5 on five. They were the only two to rope and tie all five steers. Third place winner was Ora Taton, Rapid City, SD. Go-round winners also included Coy Thompson, Whitewood, SD; Bobby Harris, Highmore, SD (2010 Champ); and Jay Pixley, Sundance, WY. Harris also had the fastest run at the finals with an 11 flat in the 5th round.
Despite the worst flooding in 130 years, Minot is going to host the Badlands Circuit Finals Rodeo as scheduled Oct. 6-10 at the State Fair Center, Minot, ND. This should give that community something to perk up about. It’s been a dreadfully long spring and summer for them and it’s not going to be all cleaned up and filed away as a memory for a long time yet.
The Roper Rally Futurity will be at Gollihers Indoor Arena, Belle Fourche, SD, on Sept. 22-23. There’s $5,000 added and is BBR approved. Call 605-641-2926 or e-mail email@example.com.
Well, we’ve made a long, fast circle, so I’d better slack my cinch and cool out my horse’s back. Send me your results and events!
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