Well, the first official ‘dude’ week has come to an end, with a fitting climax of the kids’ rodeo, followed by an evening square dance. Hugs and tears all round this morning as families say goodbye and promise to be back next year.
(both horses and riders were decorated for the occasion)
The Paradise Rodeo was just hilarious, and as cute as can be as kids aged from three to 17 showed off their newfound skills around the barrels and bending poles, with stupid antics from resident clowns Billy and Lane (complete with terrifying makeup, courtesy or Tink) keeping the parent spectators amused.
(big horse, little girl)
Billy made quite the entrance on his mule, being bucked off before he even came through the gate; but tough guy that he is, he dusted himself off and held his own in a dance-off with Lane.
(Billy versus Lane)
(Is that the Joker?)
The wranglers also put on quite the show, with Travis and Kyle competing half-naked in a Stampede race (where they have to get out of their sleeping bags, saddle their horses and race wearing only boots, hat and underwear); and the girls showing how it’s done by thrashing the boys in the three-lap arena race. Sarah had us all on the edge of our seat as her crazy horse Chevy nearly deposited her over the fence; but then she redeemed herself on the ski slope race, a photo finish with Quanna, riding bareback. Holly, however, is still somewhere out in the woods ...
(wranglers have a need for speed)
And then of course there was the obligatory ‘troughing’ of the teenage boys (and some female staff members) ... a gentle reminder that, in the cowboy world, you need to be able to take as good as you give...