Yesterday I posted on The Daily Artisan “Part 1” of my opening day visit to the Arcadia All-Florida Championship Rodeo, and this post is “Part 2!” It’s also jam-packed with photographs I took of the amazing participants and other rodeo sights.
There’s one day left in the 94th Annual Arcadia All-Florida Championship Rodeo, so if you haven’t gone yet, be sure to check it out on Sunday. It’s a lot of fun in a fine-tuned Arcadia Rodeo tradition!
Today’s post is mostly a collection of more rodeo photos I shot on Thursday, but there are a couple of things I teased in yesterday’s post – so let me get to those first.
Can Somebody Answer this Bull-Riding Question I Have?
Admittedly, I don’t know much about rodeos and bull-riding, but something I saw intrigued me while watching it and I just keep wondering about it.
If anyone reading this blog post knows the answer, please comment below, or reach out to me on social media (@thedailyartisan on Facebook and Instagram) or by email (email@example.com). Thank you!
So, as I described in Part 1 about the rodeo, my ticket was for an awesome seat located just over the bucking chutes where the bulls and horses (and their riders) come out to compete on the arena stage. From this vantage point, I was able to see a good bit of the cowboys’ and handlers’ prep of the animals (and themselves) for the rides, and I really enjoyed watching and photographing this aspect.
From some of the photos in yesterday’s post, you can tell how the bulls are lined up individually before being turned out for each ride.
In this particular instance I’m curious about, the bull was not far enough in the holding pens to be adjacent to the arena floor, but rather was in a quieter spot waiting his turn.
The thing that caught my attention was a cowboy (who later rode the bull) who gently placed his hand onto the bull’s body and left it very still there for a while. The cowboy had removed his hat, and was holding it in the other hand over his heart.
It didn’t look like the cowboy was saying anything to the bull, but instead just quietly being there. And unlike some of the other bulls in the holding areas who were already aggressively slamming things and making big noise, this particular bull was silent and didn’t seem to move a muscle while the cowboy had his hand on him.
Is doing this a typical thing bull-riders do before they ride a bull, and I just didn’t see the others do it (with the exception of one REALLY angry bull NOBODY would have been touching anyway!)? Or, is it a practice unique to this one cowboy? And what was the purpose – “bonding” with the bull, checking his heart rate, etc.?
I really want to know the answers to these questions because it was so interesting to watch – and unless I’m projecting something onto it, also sweet.
If anybody knows the answer(s), please let me know! Just below are some other photographs of the cowboy’s ride, but I’m curious about what was going on during those pre-ride minutes.
AND, by the way, this is the same bull who after he was ridden, went after the clown/barrel man as you’ll see in the pictures! So much for the bull’s earlier calmness …!
Be sure to enlarge the photos to see the striped shirt sleeve of the clown curled up tiny inside the barrel – hey, Mr. Clown, your corny jokes weren’t all THAT bad to have a bull come after you! (Actually, he was very funny!)
And great job by the “ring minder” (my non-rodeo term) who kept the clown safe and helped get the bull back into the chute!
Sorry that these photos are a bit blurry – I was freaking out when the bull charged the clown and afraid I was about to be photographing RED (and I’m not talking about the clown’s nose)!
Steer Wrestling Extraordinaire
Actually I don’t know enough about rodeos to be a good judge of this, but to the novice observer these cowboys who wrestle steer are extraordinary! It’s definitely a hand-to-hand, man-to-steer, and up-close-and-personal sport!
These photographs of three of the steer wrestlers tell the story of their fierce determination. And just how on earth do they keep on those cowboy hats?!
Keep Reading for More Rodeo Sights and Scenes – From Bull and Horse Riding to Barrel Racing to Children’s Mutton Bustin!
You know that saying that goes, “This ain’t my first rodeo”?
Well, for me, it WAS my first rodeo to photograph, and I’ve learned some things for next time – which according to the Arcadia All-Florida Championship Rodeo’s website, will be the Annual Fall Rodeo on October 15 and 16. See you there!