It was all thrills, spills and chills at the 35th annual Milk River Cowboys Association Rodeo held last Thursday in Hinsdale.
It was also perfect weather with no threat of rain. We had a southwesterly breeze blowing which blew the bugs back to Saco where they belong but the announcers, Myron Malnaa and Chris Christensen along with timers Tanya Funk and Jan Marshal got a tad-bit choked-up by the dust created in the arena.
There was a near record crowd in attendance but the competitors in a couple events were few and in the case of the bareback event there were none. There were eight saddle bronc riders and five bull riders.
Heather Kneer won first place money in the breakaway roping and Justinn Marshall finished second.
Kendall Green scored highest in the saddle bronc event with a 78 in his first attempt but bucked off in the short go.
His first ride was poetry in motion folks. When horse and rider get in unison with the animal bucking honestly and the rider spurring at every jump it is something to watch indeed.
Chisholm Christensen of Hinsdale - the towns most eligible bachelor – rode for a 65 in the first round but failed to make the wheezle in the short go. He took home second place money.
Luke Lindell managed to stay aboard his bull for the allotted time and won first place while former Hinsdale cowboy Sawyer Hillman won second place money.
In the calf roping tie down event Haven Meged took home the first place money while Lane McGill - very bright green shirt – pocketed the second place check.
In the team roping it was Shane Swankey and Shane Kneer taking home the big money and Larry Nordland and Tyler Simonsen teamed up to win second place in the team roping.
The final event of the day, the wild horse race, is always a crowd pleaser and this year was no different. Only three teams participated and the Brock Copenhaver team from Wolf Point won the money.
The MRCA always puts on a good show and particular attention is paid to these young riders in the rough stock events.
It takes some time for them to get set just right, their legs in the right positions and their halter rope at the right length and the gate guys won't open the door until the rider and horse are absolutely ready.
It adds some time to the rodeo but it is necessary for the safety of the riders. It also gives the announcers some time to tell their stories and entertain the spectators. After the gate opens it is all up to the rider to provide for his own safety!
It was a great day for a rodeo. No bugs, no rain and no serious injuries.
See ya' right here next year?
That's it for now folks. Thanks for listening.