Sweet Sassy Molassy, It’s Time For The Rodeo

The longest consecutively running rodeo east of the Mississippi River celebrates its 70th anniversary today in Gerry.

The Gerry Rodeo opens at 8 p.m. today at the Gerry Rodeo Grounds. Performances are also at 8 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. matinee on Saturday with barbecue dinners are served at 5 p.m. each evening. General admission tickets are $13 for adults and $7 for children between the ages of 3 and 12. Tickets that include dinner are $22 for adults and $12 for children. Proceeds from the rodeo benefit the Gerry Volunteer Fire Department.

Four of the top bronc riders in the world rankings will be among the nearly 200 professional athletes competing in rodeo events that haven’t changed much over the last 70 years. Events include bareback bronc riding, tie-down roping, saddle bronc riding, bull riding, steer wrestling, team roping, and cowgirls’ barrel racing, with all the entrants competing for cash prizes and points. In addition there are specialty acts such as trick riding, animal acts and clowns. A free kids’ rodeo for children between the ages of 3 and 8 kicks off at 11 a.m. Saturday. Youth can participate in rodeo-related games in the arena under the supervision of professional competitors. Registration begins at 10 a.m. with parents signing a permission form.

Cowboy up, Chautauqua County, for a good cause.