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Ranch rodeo is great success

Sheila Gardner, staff writer

Despite the lightning and rain, the first Buckaroo Fest/Minden Ranch Rodeo was declared a success by organizers who say they’ll hold the event next year.

“Everybody we talked to – in the stands and the participants – thought it was a great event and say they’ll come back next year,” said Jimmy Lee, cow boss for Bently and one of the rodeo’s organizers.

Lee estimated that 300 people from as far away as California attended the June 24-25 event at the Douglas County Fairgrounds.

“The fairgrounds was a total disaster after a thunderstorm Friday night,” Lee said. “But the (county) grounds crew was just great. I’d like to say those gentlemen worked very hard. They completely dug out one arena and hauled in new sand. They got there early Saturday morning and worked until 6 p.m. when the rodeo started.”

Lee said rain also contributed to problems with the public address system, but even that didn’t dampen the enthusiasm of the 300 spectators.

“People came from everywhere – Douglas County, Carson City, Tuscarora, Elko, Fallon, Reno,” he said. “We had vendors from Cottonwood, Calif., and Red Bluff.

Lee said there were 48 cowboys in 12 teams competing for monetary prizes and belt buckles donated by several area sponsors.

“The sponsors were great,” said Lee. “The town got behind and sponsored this event and it went really well. We’re definitely going to do it next year. We’re going to try to add a few more events next year.”

Lee said he didn’t think the Minden rodeo competed with a weeklong rodeo in Reno.

“People that came here wanted to see real working ranch cowboys instead of professional cowboys,” he said.

The following teams were event winners this year:

n High point team: Blossom Ranch, Owyhee, Nev., Wally Blossom, Ramon Cordova, Frank Dick, Hank Curry;

n Saddle bronc: Vansickle/Park Ranches, Minden, Danny Nalder;

n Calf roping: Capriola Ranch, Elko, Flint Lee;

n Team roping: Washoe Valley Ranch, Yose Campbell and Clint Campbell;

n Wild cow milking: Z Hanging X Cattle Co., Minden, Jimmy Lee, Kenny Lee, Guy Norcutt, Shawn Schacht;

n Calf branding: Blossom Ranch, Owyhee, Nev., Wally Blossom, Ramon Cordova, Frank Dick, Hank Curry;

n Ranch doctoring; I.L. Ranch, Tuscarora, Nev., Sam Marvel, Riley Brown, Norbert Gibson, Woody Harney;

n Top hand (tie): Riley Brown and Norbert Gibson.

Names of the high point team members, Blossom Ranch of Owyhee, will be engraved on the Brooks Park memorial bronze trophy on display at Sharkey’s casino in Gardnerville.

Park, whose family has been ranching in Douglas County for generations, died in January.