Woodlake Rodeo rides into town


The Woodlake Lions Rodeo will carry on its Mother’s Day weekend tradition for the 66th year. The Rodeo will be held Saturday and Sunday, May 11 and 12, at the Woodlake Lions Rodeo Grounds.
Hosted by the Woodlake Lions Club, this year’s event will feature top specialty acts in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA), top stock from legendary stock contractor Cotton Rosser and the Flying U Rodeo Company, and today’s top competitors on the professional rodeo circuit.
“The 2019 Woodlake Lions Rodeo is shaping up to be one of our best rodeos yet,” said William Valero, Woodlake Lions Club president. “We invite all of our rodeo fans who attend year after year, and new rodeo fans who have never seen our western heritage via the live action of a rodeo arena, to join us at ‘America’s Most Beautiful Rodeo Grounds.’”
Tickets are on sale at www.woodlakelionsclub.com and will be available at the gate. General admission is $15; children (ages 7 to 12) are $12; and children 6 and under are free. Gates open both days at 11 a.m. with rodeo performances beginning at 1:30 p.m.
Cowboys and cowgirls from throughout the country will be pulling into the town with “true western hospitality” to compete in the seven events of rodeo: bareback riding, saddle bronc riding, bull riding, team roping, steer wrestling, tie-down roping, and barrel racing.
“New for this year’s rodeo performances, the barrel racing will be professional cowgirls competing on the WPRA [Women’s Professional Rodeo Association] circuit,” explained Valero. “These are the cowgirls vying for top spots at the 2019 National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas and the California Circuit Finals, just like the cowboys who are here competing in the other events.”
The 2019 Woodlake Lions Rodeo will feature 12-time PRCA Specialty Act of the Year, The One Arm Bandit, John Payne. Payne’s act is a full throttle exhibition of genuine cowboy skills, riding good horses and mules while moving longhorn/Watusi steers, buffalo, and wild horses around the arena until the grand finale atop a custom-built stock trailer.
The rodeo’s lineup will also showcase the Flying U Rodeo’s Flying Cowboys. These motocross daredevils spin high in the air with flips and turns on their motorized steeds.
Both days will include a crowd favorite, Mutton Bustin’, where local children will ride sheep, competing for a trophy buckle. Other special features will include performances by local drill teams: Visalia Rockettes, Tulare County Cowgirls, and Kaweah River Senior Drill Team.
Following the rodeo performance on Saturday, May 11, the Woodlake Lions Club presents the annual “Rodeo After Party,” which is free with rodeo admission. The local legend, Mr. Rude, will play live music to continue on the fun and excitement of the day’s events, followed by music by DJ Louie Lopez.
Sunday, May 12 will be “Fiesta Day,” with performances during the rodeo by the Escaramuza Valle Real and two Charro bull riders!
“We’d like to thank our major sponsors of the 2019 Woodlake Lions Rodeo: Bud Light, Valley Pure, Bank of the Sierra, Mid Valley Disposal, Beresford Ranches, Spence Fence, CINCH Jeans, and Boot Barn,” said Valero. “Our rodeo tradition in Woodlake continues each year because of our sponsors, rodeo fans, our hard-working volunteers and, of course, the stars of the show: the competitors.”
The Woodlake Lions Rodeo Grounds are located at 19400 Avenue 398 in Woodlake, Calif. For more information on the Woodlake Lions Rodeo, follow @woodlakelionsclub on Facebook and Instagram or visit the club’s website.

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