Wednesday, March 14, 2012

the ghost of rodeos past...

It was a warm day of spring and I was driving down a county blacktop road I had not been on in 2-3 years and I was enjoying the rural scenery. I passed thru what was left of a ghost town and then a very small town that is dying off but still there and about a half mile from there I looked to the north and I saw it. Set way back from the road and looking to me like an abandoned saddle club arena. I was due for my lunch break and needing to stretch my legs so I turned up the road to have a look. I have seen several old saddle club arenas overgrown in weeds but wait....this one was a full fledged rodeo arena....not some 4H kid's place to learn to ride. It looks like time has stood still here for a few decades or so...
I haven't been to a rodeo since I was a teenager and I'm not a horse guy either but the whole idea of small town simple entertainment with local cowboys trying to please the crowd gave me reason to reflect and I looked around some more.


 Wow, this place has been rotting away for a long time....and I thought about the pretty girls in the color guard, the singing of the national anthem, the barrel racing, and broncs, calf roping, team roping, bull riding, and of course the clowns. 


I could almost hear the announcer do a skit or routine back and forth with the clown which is among the funniest monologues you will ever hear. The tin sign on the booth was for a gas station that sold Standard Oil I think but was very faded. I looked the calf roping chute and the big swinging gates for the bulls and bronc and could imagine the cow bell clanging on the bull's necks and they bucked and spun...


The bleachers were all but gone and would not have held too many folks. I am guessing they held one event here each year perhaps during the fall roundup season. 

And there were two concession stands with one being older than the other. Very primitive and they represented a simpler time...


There is just some kind of beauty to be seen in decay that calls my name. I can't explain it but it makes me want to preserve it and show others that is was there and it mattered to someone long ago. And I wondered if the hot dogs were good............and if they had popcorn?








I liked this old sign..."Say Pepsi please"
and after looking around a little more and pondering the "lost rodeo" and thinking of the old song "ghost riders in the sky" I was saddled up in my truck and on the trail again......
Thanks for joining me again. Who knows what lies ahead in my journeys? We will see next time.....


1 comment:

  1. rodeo clowns another lost artform

    ReplyDelete