Vernon College Rodeo to host 40th annual rodeo

Published: Sep. 28, 2023 at 6:05 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

VERNON, Texas (KAUZ) - The Vernon College Rodeo officially kicks off on Sept. 29 at 7 p.m. at the Wilbarger County Event Center, giving rodeo athletes the chance to earn points to reach their end goal of getting to the finals in Casper, Wyo.

Participants shared the impact that rodeo has on their careers and teams, saying that rodeo is much more than just a sport to them. Being a part of the team has allowed them to overcome challenges and find people they can trust and depend on.

”I typically define this place as a place of growth and a place I can hone in my skills and be the great break rope tie that I’ve always wanted to be and could ultimately become,” Vernon College freshman Ridley Timberlake said. Timberlake is a breakaway roper, and she said being on the rodeo team has created bonds that go past friendships.

”This rodeo team is a family, and we all get to hang out together,” Timberlake said. “We do everything together, and so it’s special.”

Finding a balance between hitting the stables and class work is critical. Vernon sophomore Kyna Hudma says time management is key, a skill she has learned through rodeo.

These students undergo extensive training, so safety is essential.

”Well, we have daily practices. It’s kind of interesting. This is one spoke where you can get severely hurt,” Vernon Athletic Director Jason Jenkins explained. “You practice, so we try to make it as safe and as durable as we possibly can. We provide livestock for them to practice against and with.”

More than 700 students across Texas will come to participate, and the college believes this is the time for them to shine.

“This is their only home event they’ve got, so this is really their only shining moment,” Jenkins said.

Although participants will get down and dirty, being polished is a significant factor.

“You look good, you feel good, you perform good!” Hudman and Timberlake said.

The college wants to thank its community and event sponsors. Hudman said the community’s support shows the Vernon team that they care, which means a lot to her.