UVALDE – We are less than a month out from the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo.
In a change this year, rodeo officials are hosting a qualifier competition in Uvalde rather than having the rodeo be invitation-only.
After more than a year of hard work and thousands of volunteers, it’s time to saddle up and let the fun begin.
”To bring the sport of rodeo to anywhere we can, that is really one of our missions,” Chris Derby, chief marketing officer of the stock show and rodeo, said. “Let kids see it, let everybody see it. It’s such a fun event and it’s been going on for generations and decades.”
Over 800 contestants have been competing since Monday in their events.
The top 10 will move on to take part in the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo.
J Tom Fisher is vying for one of those spots.
”I think I’m sitting around 7th or 8th but I’m only about 9-tenths of a second out of third, so I feel like if I draw a good steer and make a good run, I can move up quite a bit in the average,” Fisher said. He’s competing in steer roping.
On top of being the rodeo’s first qualifier event, this event brings the sights and sounds of a big city rodeo to a small community like Uvalde.
”Rural roots combined with the big pomp and circumstances of a giant urban rodeo like San Antonio, you bring them together and we’re gonna get a little bit of that tonight,” Cody Davenport, CEO executive director of the rodeo said.
Last year, the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo gave away over $11 million in scholarships. They hope to do that again this year while also inspiring the next generation of rodeoers.
“I can sit back and I can say every contestant out there, you had a shot to get into San Antonio which is the biggest, baddest rodeo in the nation,” Davenport said.
With sold-out stands Saturday night, the first-ever mash-up of rural and urban rodeo is already a huge success.
The San Antonio rodeo kicks off in February.