Here comes the big one
Park Rapids Headwaters ProRodeo and Xtreme Bulls is July 1-3
The Park Rapids Headwaters ProRodeo features a variety of rodeo events July 1-2 at the Jokela ProWest rodeo grounds, and Xtreme Bulls competition July 3, located east of Park Rapids on State Hwy. 34.
The approximately two-and-a-half-hour show is the largest ProRodeo event in Minnesota.
“Two weeks ago, we got our contestant entry numbers back,” said Randy Jokela, producer for Jokela ProWest. “What is exciting is, the first night of our rodeo, because of the increased prize money, we have 23 bull riders entered.”
That’s in addition to bronc riding and roping events, he explained.
“The second night of the rodeo, we have 19 new ones – because they can only compete one night in ProRodeo,” said Jokela, adding that at the Xtreme Bulls show, there will be 40 bull rides. “If you like bull riding, we’ve got you covered.”
Each night’s intermission show features a Moto X Freestyle lineup including Scott Murray, a three-time X Games winner, and two other Moto X riders.
“Plus, every night we’ll have kids’ sheep riding, barrel racing, etc.,” said Jokela.
He said no one in Minnesota did mutton busting until Park Rapids Headwaters ProWest brought it in during the 1970s. “I saw it in Montana and brought it here,” he said.
With their same-day rodeo ticket, Jokela said, guests will also have free access to the dance immediately following each night’s rodeo, featuring “The Voice” finalist Mikele Buck with his band from Texas on Friday, July 1 and CMA rookie star Lendon James and his band from Wyoming on July 2 and 3.
Despite the larger purse, the free dances and rising costs, Jokela noted, they kept ticket prices the same. “We were able to do that because we have tremendous support here in Park Rapids,” he acknowledged, “sponsors and advertisers. You can’t do it otherwise.”
Rain or shine, the rodeo goes on, he said. “We don’t care if it’s a downpour, it’ll happen.”
Tickets are available at www.ParkRapidsBullRide.com. Adult ticket prices are discounted $3 if ordered by midnight June 30, but remain available at gate price through rodeo time. “More importantly, you don’t wait in line,” Jokela said. “You can get there when the gates open at 5 p.m. and pick your seat.”
The events also feature a large lineup of vendors offering clothing, hats, food and drink.