A mix of charity, business and fun combine when the third annual Cowtown Rodeo kicks off July 7.
The 18-plus event hosts a variety of classic professional rodeo showcases, as well as a multitude of participant-driven activities throughout the afternoon. Funds raised will be invested in education in Nepal, according to Cowtown Rodeo founder Trevor Ironside.
“Every year it gets a little bigger and a little better,” he said.
The Cowtown Rodeo kicks off at 2 p.m. with professional bull riding. The newest event at the rodeo is called Bull Fighters Only, which Ironside said takes centre stage as four brave people with acrobatic skills enter the rodeo grounds to try and beat out a bull.
The Cowtown Rodeo also features many participation events throughout the afternoon, such as the four-person mini chuck wagon race with the winner taking home a Calgary Flames belt buckle, Ironside said.
Other activities include calf roping, a shooting gallery, mechanical bull and strongman bell. One of the most popular events, however, is the free Jeans 2-step Try On.
All at once, Ironside said 60 pairs of jeans are tossed into the middle of the arena before participants strip down to their underwear to find a pair that fits.
“When they find a pair…they go to the judge, confirm that it is a good fit and then from there they get to keep them,” he said. “It’s fantastic.”
Proceeds from the Cowtown Rodeo go toward funding local non-profit charity Medical Mercy Canada Society’s (MMCS) project to build a school in Nepal for teenage girls, said Ironside, who is also the president of MMCS.
In the past two years, the Cowtown Rodeo has raised roughly $50,000, he said, adding the cost to build a classroom is $10,000. MMCS has built 16 already and is starting on the third floor of the school to build eight more.
“There are over 220 teenage girls who would not be going to school right now that are in that school,” he said.
The Cowtown Rodeo takes place at the Girletz Rodeo Ranch, located west of Airdrie off Township Road 264, from 2 to 9 p.m.
Tickets are $99 and can be purchased at cowtown-rodeo.ca