Rodeo fans want to see the arm jerker, a bronc or bull with a powerful buck, not a hat bender, an animal who bucks very little and mostly runs around the arena. Chasing cans, or barrel racing, is another fan favorite, as is bulldogging, aka steer wrestling, where a cowboy leaps off his horse onto a running steer, grabs it by the horns and wrestles it to the ground. And don’t forget the bullfighters, also known as rodeo clowns — their work in protecting bull riders is delicate and serious, but their patter can crack up the crowd. There is an art to protecting the riders. Lane County rodeo fans, after a year off because of COVID, will get to see it all this week at the Eugene Pro Rodeo. The first night is Family Night, and kids, be sure to saddle up on your stick horse for the trail course. The next night is “Tough Enough To Wear Pink” night, and “American Celebration” wraps up the three-day event.
The Eugene Pro Rodeo is July 2 through July 4 at the Oregon Horse Center, 2644 River Road. Gates open at 5 pm each day with rodeo performances starting at 7:30 pm and fireworks shows at 10 pm. Tickets at the gate are $10 to $27 on the first night, $17 to $27 the next two nights, all general admission, and kids 5 and under are free every night.