Dates for the 101 Wild West Rodeo this year will be June 8th thru June 10th,
with performances at 8 p.m. nightly.
The 101 Wild West Rodeo will be held at the 101 Ranch Rodeo Arena, located on
West Prospect avenue at North Ash Street. Beautification efforts of the arena
parking lot have changed entrance roads to the parking lot areas, to Ash Street
and to West Prospect Avenue. The new substation has taken up the space that had
been used as an entryway, at the corner of Ash Street and Prospect Avenue.
The 2016 Rodeo will mark the 58th running of the rodeo honoring what historians
have described as the birthplace of rodeo - the once mighty 101 Ranch.
The fabulous 101 Ranch, with a 50-year history both rich and tragic, influenced
Oklahoma and agriculture like no other ranching operation in the world.
The 101 Ranch, established by Col. George W. Miller in 1879 on the banks of the
Salt Fork River southwest of what is now Ponca City, began with thousands of
acres of land which Miller both leased and purchased from his friends - the
Ponca, Tonkawa and Osage tribes.
The Colonel, who died in 1903 at the age of 61, and the ranch, which was already
successful came into the capable hands of his sons, George, Joe and Zack.
It was 1905 when the Millers offered to perform what they called a "round-up" or
"buffalo chase" as an entertainment for a National Editorial Association
convention. Visitors were said to come to the ranch in 30 regular and special
trains, and the crowd estimated at nearly 60,000 was thrilled to the exhibition
of cowboys recreating real life ranch work from bronc riding and roping to Tom
Mix's debut as a roper and rider.
After years of success as the "101 Ranch Real Wild West and Great Far East Show"
things at the ranch began to crumble in the late 1920s, due to the deaths of Joe
in 1927 and George in 1929.
But the rodeo returned to the Ponca City scene, when the Ponca City Cherokee
Strip Rodeo Committee came up with the idea of having a rodeo during the
Cherokee Strip Celebration in September 1960. By 1962 the financial success of
the Cherokee Strip Rodeo proved that people wanted the return of a show similar
to the 101 Ranch Wild West Show. The present bleachers were constructed in 1962;
however additional improvement in chute heaven, the press box, and the new left
& right release chutes have made the rodeo arena a top notch attraction.
The Ponca City Rodeo Foundation headed by Larry Goodno, in his fourteenth
year as president, contracts with a number of interesting one act exhibitions
for the three-night stand. Other foundation officers include Raymond Ball as
vice president; Kacey Calhoun as secretary and
Sarah Troutman as treasurer.
Regular rodeo performances will run Thursday through Saturday, June 8th thru
June 10th at 8 p.m. nightly. The 101 Rodeo Arena is located at the
intersection of Ash and Prospect.
Are you tough enough to wear pink? The 101 Wild West Rodeo will continue the
tradition with the implementation of a Tough Enough To Wear Pink? Night.
Thursday evening's performance will be designated as "Pink Night".
The color pink is not something you would usually associate with the tough sport
of rodeo; however, breast cancer has touched the lives of many rodeo and western
lifestyle families. Rodeo committees, western event producers and western
manufacturers have joined together to raise awareness and funds for the fight
against breast cancer.
The TETWP campaign puts this important health issue top-of-mind at rodeos and
western events across America and Canada. The Ponca City Rodeo Foundation which
organizes and puts on the 101 Wild West Rodeo is pleased to join those who have
already gotten behind this campaign and the momentum continues to build.
At Thursday's performance, the foundation will give $1 for each person in the
audience who is wearing pink and $50 for each event winner who is wearing pink
to the Breast Cancer Assistance Program Fund out of Tulsa.
Thursday will also be Community Appreciation night come out early and enjoy a
free barbeque dinner with ticket purchase from 6:30pm to 7:30pm on the east-side
of the rodeo grounds.
There will be a live concert and dance immediately following each night's Rodeo
Performance on the east-side of the arena. Meet the cowboys & contract
personnel, visit with some old friends or maybe make some new ones.
Back again to the rodeo this year and sure to be a crowd pleaser is the 101
Women's Drill and Grand Entry Team. This array of talented and spirited women is
kicking off the grand entry each night. They will be displaying talented
horsemanship in flag bearing and synchronized routines.
Garrett Yerigan will be making his first appearance to the Ponca City rodeo scene
as announcer, providing exciting and entertaining commentary.
This year's rodeo is again being produced by Andrew's Rodeo Company of Addielou,
Texas, promises to be greater than ever with an excellent lineup of contestants,
specialty acts, bull fighters, and stock. Andrew's Rodeo Company has become
quite popular with the rodeo associations and cowboys, providing stock for a
three-night plus slack rodeo. Andrew’s ability to produce quality stock is well
noted with 1999 Hall of Fame Bucking Bull, BODACIOUS, with 135 outs and only 8
qualified rides. Bodacious won Bucking Bull of the Year 1994, 1995, and Bucking
Bull of the NFR 1992, 1994, and 1995. Son of Bodacious, Bo Dipping, began taking
the spotlight in the Rodeo Circuit. He was awarded Rankest Bull Summer Finals in
Dallas 2001 and 2002. Sports Illustrated followed his career with an article in
June 2003. Ft. Worth Star Telegram and Dallas Morning News visited the Andrews
Ranch summer 2003 publishing a full-page article on Sammy and BoDipping. In
2004, Outdoor Life visited the Andrews Ranch and aired a documentary called
FEARLESS BODACIOUS. Houston Rodeo and Livestock Show honored Sammy during the
year 2004 awarding him with a bucking chute to use as a memorial for Bo’s grave.
ESPN has recently visited the Andrews Ranch and aired an insert of Sammy and
Bodacious throughout the telecast of the 2005 NFR displaying the
much-appreciated bucking chute.
The bull riders won’t be the only brave souls in the arena at
the 101 Wild West Rodeo this year, serving as Barrelman this year will be Jeff
"Slim" Garner, with a 2000-pound bull bearing down on you, it helps to have a
sense of humor. It also helps to have a barrel to hide in.
The only difference between Jeff Garner and a stand-up comedian, is that he’s
doing his job from the middle of a rodeo arena instead of a stage with a
spotlight. His job during the rodeo is twofold. He provides the laughs and
banters with the announcer. But during the bull riding his more dangerous job
begins. Garner is a barrelman: the cowboy who works the barrel, providing an
oasis of safety for bullfighters and bull riders, in case an angry bull decides
to chase them.
Returning this year as Bullfighter is Chuck Swisher.
Chuck says the best part about bull fighting is the adrenaline rush and helping
guys out. "The bull riders are always walking up to me and saying, 'you're
crazy.'" Chuck disagrees with them. "No, they're the crazy ones. They're tied to
the bulls. I'm just out there having fun." Also returning this year to the Ponca City rodeo scene will be Bullfighter
Nathan has a passion for the sport of rodeo. He provides one major
function, and that is cowboy protection. It is his job to keep the bull rider
out of harm’s way in the rodeo arena and put his life on the line for a fallen
The official crowning of the 101 Rodeo Queen is held
during the Saturday night performance.
Reigning queen, Allie Baker of Barnsdall, Oklahoma, will hand over her
authentic hand beaded 101 Wild West Rodeo crown.
Audiences will have
many opportunities to meet and greet queens at each nightly
"Rodeo Week" in Ponca City is celebrated with several exciting activities in the
Ponca City areas including a parade downtown along Grand Avenue on Saturday
morning. The parade which starts at 10 a.m. is immediately followed by the
annual Kids Rodeo held in front of the Ponca City Library located at the east
end of Grand Avenue. The Kids Rodeo has become an exciting tradition of the
parade offering kids the opportunity to meet queens, visit rodeo clowns, and get
up close to rodeo affiliated livestock. Horse rides, goat tail tying, and stick
horse barrel races are just a sample of the fun activities slated for the kids.
The Ponca City Rodeo Foundation, its 16 board members, and numerous supporters,
invites everyone to attend this year's rodeo. "Family Night" is Thursday with
adults just $10 in advance, $12 at the gate, & kids ages 12 & under FREE. Friday
and Saturday performances are adults just $10 in advance, $12 at the gate, kids
ages 7-12 $5, & kids ages 6 & under FREE, or buy a weekend pass and enjoy all 3
nights for $20. Advanced tickets can be found at select local businesses.