Bronc riding for the troops

Chantelle Simonsen practices for the opening ceremony of the 2010 Outlaw Bronc Riding Support the Troops event. This year’s event is scheduled for Sept. 23 and 24.

Danielle Switalski/Elko Daily Free Press file

ELKO — Cowboys will ride for the troops at the second annual Outlaw Broncs rodeo.

The event is scheduled for 7 p.m. Sept. 23 and 24 at the Spring Creek Horse Palace. The rodeo features soldier stock saddle bronc riding, staff sergeants steer riding, seventh Calvary steer stopping, G.I. Jane barrel races, mini G.I. Jane barrel races, military mutton busting, warhawk wild cow race and sniper switch ender team roping.

All contestants, as well audience members, are encouraged to wear camouflage in support of the troops, said event organizer Jess Jones.

Last year, the event had approximately 75 competitors for the one-day event, so it was split into two days this year. Jones said there are local competitors, as well as people coming from all over the West to participate.

A portion of rodeo proceeds will go to the POW/MIA Elko Awareness Association. All active or retired servicemen and women, as well as police officers and firefighters, will get into the event for free, Jones said.

In sticking with the theme, prizes include belt buckles that have a camouflage background.

“I think it’s very important because they’re the reason we have the freedom to do this stuff and it’s for their fighting and their sacrifice,” Jones said.

Smoked Bear will also be in attendance and there is a dance following the rodeo Sept. 24.

Last year, organizers and volunteers videotaped the event and sent it to the troops stationed overseas. This year, organizers are gathering supplies for the POW/MIA Elko Awareness Association that is currently supporting the Yellow Ribbon Support Center. This nonprofit organization fills wish lists for soldiers overseas.

“They have to be custom-approved items. They send different care packages to troops all over and we’re trying to bring awareness to a charity they (POW/MIA) support,” said Lisa Bertalotto of Moon Creek Saddles & Tack, who also helps put on the event.

There will be two barrels set up at the Horse Palace for items such as socks, beef jerky and chap stick. Bertalotto said they are asking people to donate smaller items because they are easier to ship.

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More information on the Yellow Ribbon Center can be found at www.yellowribbonsupportcenter.com.

There are also item drop-off locations at Ruby Mountain Pawn and Finance and Al Park Petroleum.

Jones said the event is garnering “a lot of support” from the community and local businesses.

Event sponsors include Divine Expressions, WSRRA, IFA Country Stores, Stockman’s Supply, Pole Line Contractors, the Elko Convention Center, S&G Electric, Gallagher Ford, EFCU, Moon Creek Saddles & Tack, Mach Four Construction, Valley Boot and Shoe Repair, Snyder Mechanical, Komatsu’s, Gold Dust West and Ruby Mountain Pawn.

Admission to the rodeo is $10 for adults, $5 for ages 10-18 and ages 10 and younger are free.

For information on the rodeo, visit www.outlawbroncs.com.

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