Sunday, January 13, 2008

Sunday Morning at the Stock Show

This week, one of the largest rodeo and stock shows in the United States is making its annual stop in Denver. The National Western Stock Show comes to town every January, with its array of livestock. Roosters, hogs, goats, steers, llamas, horses and many other animals are all there to compete, along with their owners. I had a couple of hours to kill, so this morning the lovely spouse and I made the trip to the National Western Complex to take a look.

One of the events today is the Colorado Fiddle Championship competition. Yesterday, a number of fiddlers were eliminated, and the winners of that contest compete today in the finals. The first entertainment was a group of talented fiddling kids known collectively as Fiddleocity. They ranged in age from five years old to early teens. These kids are learning by the Suzuki method, and play both fiddle and guitar, so they can play accompaniment for one another.

Fiddleocity on stage

It was interesting that the only boy in the group was the five year old. The youngest girl was eight. Quite a good bunch of kids, and the talents they are developing will enrich their lives for years to come. I imagine they will always remember performing at the National Western Complex.

Some of the kids - Click any picture for a larger version

Before the adult competition starts up in the afternoon, the judges come onto the stage to display their musical abilities. Each took a turn on both fiddle and guitar, and played some rousing "hoe-down" music and western swing. Quite entertaining.

The judges pickin' and sawin' out a tune

Outside the main building, the food vendors had everything from turkey legs to fried Twinkies for sale. Here is a man working to grill turkey and chicken for the hungry masses.

Cooking up a tasty treat!

As the rodeo competition doesn't begin until later in the day, we didn't stick around for it, but we did notice the preparation going on in the main arena. The barrel races, cattle roping, and steer riding will be going on before you know it!

Prepping the rodeo arena

While waiting for the riding to begin, what cowboy doesn't need a bit of food to keep up his strength? I caught this young cowboy contemplating the competition ahead and admiring a corn dog before biting into it.

Git a long little corn doggie!

It's not just the cowboys that are awaiting their turn in the arena. The horses are also standing by, ready to show off their best stuff!

Put on a good show, but DON'T break a leg. They'll shoot you!

As we depart, we are reminded by this friendly hog that it all happens again next year!

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