We’d seen the signs advertising Cowtown Rodeo for a couple of years before finally deciding to go. We know, just what advertisers love to hear! lol. Anyway, one day we finally said why not? Let’s try something different. We’d done a lot of things but go to a rodeo definitely wasn’t one of them.
When we pulled up we were really surprised to see how PACKED it was. People were everywhere–on bleachers, the grass, in lawn chairs, standing around, etc. It was a family event with lots of energetic kids bouncing about the audience area.
The first thing we noticed were the food stands, which had typical festival foods but somehow it just didn’t feel right to eat a burger at a rodeo. I mean, come on, seriously? That sentiment brings us to our mixed feelings. While it certainly was entertaining, it was a bit sad to see how crowded the animals were as they waited for their turn out of the gate.
They were literally packed in a filthy, narrow passage from face to butt, and it just sucked some of the energy out of the air to see them that. Once out of the gate, however, it seemed to be payback. They bucked, and thrashed and wildly galloped throughout the ring. We weren’t rooting for the humans, but for the animals. We wanted to see them toss the cowboys off like unwanted fleas.
Now that was entertaining!
Seeing the calves try to avoid being roped and downed, however, was not. We couldn’t think of any reason to find it entertaining. It was sad.
The women riding the horses didn’t appear to be cruel and generally for sport, but of course we don’t know that for sure. Based on the look of the bulls and the fear in the calves eyes as they bolted out of the gates, we’re inclined to think the horses probably aren’t treated any better behind the scenes.
We know rodeo is the official sport of some western states and beloved by many. But as we were writing this we decided to do a little more reading and learned just how poorly the animals are treated for the sake of human entertainment (prodded electrically to rile them up so they can buck). Knowing what we know now, we can say we won’t be going back.
Outside of the actual event, there was a gigantic flea market with tons of merchandise that we didn’t get to check out because it was too late at night and they were closed. Considering the above and it’s a little bit of a hike from us we’ll have to skip out on that too. We can’t, with good hearts, support any part of it. The hats we bought that night were enough.
If you’ve had a different experience or see it another way, let us know!
Until next time…