Rodeo ‘Daze’ rides into town for a Wild West Weekend
Tim “Wild Thang” Lepard will entertain rodeo fans during the three performances on Aug. 4-5 at the fairgrounds as the specialty act and rodeo clown. Team Ghost Riders and Lepard provide an action-packed performance, bringing the jungle and the rodeo arena together with three of the best sheep dog riding monkeys in the business. These little wonders work together with Tim and bring the Wild West to life as they feature their special cowboy skills like no other.
IRON RIVER—The 45th annual U.P. Championship Rodeo rides into town Aug. 3-5 with a wild jammed-packed Rodeo Daze weekend for the entire family.
Rodeo Daze, sponsored by NorthStar Health System and Bellin Health, the U.P. Rodeo’s “Triple T” sponsors, includes the traditional fare of rodeo activities that have become a summer tradition in Iron County.
Events include the popular Downtown Market Daze, the Wild West Parade, Miss U.P. Rodeo, rodeo vittles, Art Round-Up, a foot-stompin’ street dance in downtown Iron River “and more,” said a rodeo spokesperson.
Activities get under way on Friday, Aug. 3, with the popular Market Daze celebration in downtown Iron River from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., where shoppers will find a variety of vendors to meet their shopping needs.
Line dancing her way through Iron River will be Jan Emig. Sponsored by Stitch-In-Time, Emig will be sharing her boot-scootin’ with rodeo fans throughout the weekend.
The annual Art Round-Up gets under way at the Windsor Center on U.S. 2 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The Rodeo Vittles luncheon at the First Presbyterian Church, located adjacent to the Windsor Center, will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
At 11 a.m., the Miss U.P. Rodeo extemporaneous questions event is planned for downtown during Market Daze.
“C’mon down and see the Miss U.P. candidates who will be vying for this year title,” said the spokesperson.
At 2 p.m., the Miss U.P. Rodeo pageant speeches and modeling event is planned at the Iron County Fairgrounds’ Rotunda building.
The third annual U.P. Rodeo concert will be held at the fairgrounds grandstand with Clay Walker headlining the show along with Jason Jones.
Local favorites Next Myle and Jessie McPherson will kick off the evening of country fun. Tickets for the concert are $24 in advance or $34 at the gate.
Saturday’s Rodeo activities begin with the Miss U.P. Rodeo horsemanship competition at 8 a.m.
Stop by the Iron River Senior Citizens Center from 8 to 11:30 a.m. for a pancake breakfast with all the trimmings.
The popular Wild West Parade is set to begin at 10 a.m. Registration begins at 8 a.m. with the helpful hands of Global Response North.
“No preregistration is required to enter the parade,” said the spokesperson.
“Just show up and register at the registration table, which will be located at the corner of Fourth Street and Franklin Avenue.”
Prizes will be given out in several categories, said the spokesperson.
“Horses are needed as well as our ‘valuable’ pooper scoopers.”
The Art Round-Up continues on Saturday at the Windsor Center from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Following the parade, will be brats on the outdoor grill at Angeli Foods as well as at Reino American Legion Post 21 on Genesee Street. The Classic Farm Machinery group will also have a display at the VFW hall.
With the opening of the gates at the grandstand, the main event, the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association (PRCA) event begins – the U.P. Championship Rodeo.
A new specialty act, Tim ‘Wild Thang’ Lepard and his Team Ghost Riders, will gallop into the arena. These saddled-up dogs with their monkey riders will entertain the crowds.
New rodeo announcer Alan Moorhead will emcee rodeo events. Whether it is on horseback or on foot in the arena, or meandering through the crowds in the grandstands, a crisp, clear delivery and outgoing personality makes Moorhead an asset for any rodeo in the country.
The second rodeo performance is set for 7 p.m. Gates to the rodeo arena open at 5 p.m. with pre-rodeo entertainment again provided by the Menomonie (Wis.) Saddle Club at 5:30 p.m.
Saturday’s evening rodeo performance is dedicated to breast cancer awareness and everyone is invited to show that they’re “Tough Enough to Wear Pink.”
If you still haven’t had enough fun, head downtown Iron River for the Rodeo Street Dance. Kick up your heels to more live music.
On Sunday, Aug. 5, Rodeo Arena gates open at noon followed at 1 p.m. with pre-rodeo entertainment by the Menominee Saddle Club.
At 1:30, it’s time for the crowning of this year’s Miss U.P. Rodeo Queen, who will represent the U.P. Championship Rodeo at many events both here in Iron County, the U.P. and in the Midwest.
The third and final rodeo performance kicks off at 2 p.m. and is in memory of Chet Benson.
Stock contractor for this year’s rodeo performances are Three Hills Rodeo Inc. from Bernard, Iowa.
During all three rodeo performances, spectators will be treated to the thrills and spills of rodeo events including saddle bronc riding, team roping, barrel racing, tie-down roping, steer wrestling, bareback and bull riding.
Tickets for rodeo performances are $15 for adult and $5 for youth. They are available at Iron County Chamber of Commerce, Angeli Foods, Crystal Lumber, Crystal Bait, Florence Motors and the Music Tree or go to www.uprodeo.com.
“There’s a lot to see and do during Rodeo Daze weekend,” said the spokesperson. “So, mark your calendars and plan on a wild, “Wild Thang” western weekend in Iron River Aug. 3-5.”