Family rodeo night is a family affair in Moffat County |

Family rodeo night is a family affair in Moffat County

Chelsea Self / For Craig Press
A young cowboy holds on in hopes of making the eight seconds during the steer riding competition at the 2020 Moffat County Fair Family Rodeo Friday evening.
Chelsea Self / For Craig Press

On a windy evening at the Moffat County Fairgrounds, smoke from the Pine Gulch Fire filled the air while the crowd began to trickle in and fill the stands for a fun night of family rodeo.

The mutton busting was an early crowd pleaser and a popular event as the fair officials had to split the event in two separate rounds in order to get each kid a chance at a few seconds of fame while holding on for dear life.

Though 2020 has not been a normal year due to the outbreak of COVID-19, the majority of people had little concern when it came to the virus and were just excited for a fun night of roping, barrel racing and steer riding.

Craig resident Connie Gomez, who’s grand daughter was taking part in multiple 4H showings earlier in the week, was not alone in here assessment that there were less people at the rodeo this year. The consensus of many of the locals at this year’s rodeo agreed that the fair was smaller with fewer people than fairs in the past but that didn’t detour them from looking forward to a night at the arena with friends and family.

“Everybody has been staying their distance so there really isn’t much concern (about the Coronavirus),” Gomez said.

Bringing the community together

“There are a lot of differences this year,” Jade Wilhite, who comes to the fair each year said. “But I will tell you what, the events that they have put in place are just great. I don’t think anyone is missing out on anything. They really came together and made something that was meaningful and indicative of our part of the country.”

Wilhite went on the mention that this year’s fair and rodeo were much smaller than past years without the big concerts and PRCA Rodeo but that she appreciated the change.

“There are great opportunities for our local community to come together and do it ourselves this year,” she said. “It’s a handmade fair and that’s what fairs started off to be back in the day; so I’m pretty proud of that.”

Family Affair

Fairs and rodeos are often family affairs that many rural families do throughout the generations and is something they are proud of.

Craig resident Suzie Herrera is from one of those families. Her father was a horse lover and took part in numerous rodeos.

“My dad was quite the roper and was always in the rodeos,” she said. “He loved his horses. His great granddaughter is into it now, so its really cool.”

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