Blog: It's a 65 Year Tradition: The Spooner Heart of the North Rodeo
June 22, 2018
The Queen and Princess have official started their reign as rodeo royalty for the 65th Annual Heart of the North Rodeo. Coats of vibrant “rodeo red” paint have been put on the chutes that will soon hold the cowboys waiting for their 8 second ride to begin. The arena stands sit quiet waiting for those anxious rodeo fans to arrive to take in a tradition that has lasted for 65 years - one of the longest standing traditions for this community.
Hat on straight, shirt tucked in, belt buckle pulled tight and boots on - you’re officially ready for the rodeo. Fans of all ages get on their best western attire for this event, and when we refer to fans of all ages we mean even the youngest of the young. The mutton busters look just like the professionals out there, just in a smaller fashion. You can see the inspiration in their eyes as the chutes swing open and the broncs take off kicking, spinning, and jumping - that’s a dream that they want to do someday. But, for now they will practice hanging on as those big wooly sheep bust out looking for the rest of their flock. Take it from Mr. Evan, a mutton buster from last years rodeo.
“What I first remember is the dirt and its dusty smell. My short shorn sheep’s eyes were wide and wild with spirit. But he springs away and the gritty ground is where I fell, prompting a roaring, raging crowd; I can still almost hear it.
I left my pride in the arena that Friday in July at the 64th Annual Heart of the North Rodeo in Spooner. Five seconds was not long enough, and there my dreams ran dry. But I went back hard at work from where I live in Bloomer.
I tried my hand in saddle bronc riding with my trusty pony, Nancy. Since the brahma bull told me I would make no bull fighter. But my short-legged shaggy Shetland proved to be nothing fancy. So what I’ve learned is, I must return as I am Evan, the Wooly Rider.”
Lucky for the Wooly Rider, he will get to redeem his ride this year as he hops on and holds tight to the wool. Friday will be his time to shine amongst other youngsters!
When taking in the setting sky and watching the cowboys and cowgirls competing at something they love, you will quickly learn why this rodeo has become such a long standing tradition. If you still want to attend the 65th Annual Rodeo, tickets are still available for any of the three performances - July 5th, 6th, & 7th. Don’t be fooled by the myth that Saturday night is the finals as you could see that winning ride right out of the gate on Thursday evening!