Children develop a love for the traditional Western way of life, animals and competing at a young age. By the time to become high school age, many are accomplished rodeo participants. The National High School Rodeo Association boasts more than 12,000 members from 41 states in addition to provinces in Canada and Australia. From July 15 through July 21, 1,500 students from North America and Australia will demonstrate their skills while competing in the National High School Finals Rodeo in Rock Springs, Wyoming.
History of the National High School Rodeo Association
The National High School Finals Rodeo or NHSFR is considered the largest event of its kind on the planet. The young athletes competing each year have the chance to win various national titles, prizes and scholarships. The National High School Rodeo Association or NHSRA makes this possible.
During the 1940s, educator Claude Mullins enjoyed the sport of rodeo. He also noticed that students regularly used the local arena to hone dogging and roping skills. He joined efforts with fellow rodeo enthusiasts attorney Alton Allen and pharmacist Leon Kahanek to form the Texas State High School Championship Rodeo. The first rodeo took place in 1947 and had 121 participants. The event attracted students from across Texas. Within two years, other states began establishing high school rodeos.
The participating states merged to form the National High School Rodeo in 1949. That same year, the first high school rodeo took place in Texas. During the rodeo, the National High School Rodeo Association was born. In order to become a member of the association, students were required to carry a passing GPA, be of good character and meet the age requirement. The development of the NHSRA provides the means to mentor students while offering the chance to participate in a time-honored thrilling sport.
At the high school level, cowboys and cowgirls compete in a larger variety of events. For each rodeo, an NHSRA Queen is also elected. Events for male students include:
• Bareback and saddle bronc riding
• Bull riding
• Steer wrestling
• Team and tie-down roping
Female students compete in:
• Barrel racing
• Breakaway roping
• Goat tying
• Pole bending
• Team roping
At the high school level, cowboys and cowgirls also have the opportunity to participate together in team roping events.
Tickets for the National High School Finals Rodeo in Rock Springs are available at the fairgrounds ticket office.
As with all Western events, the Cowboy Lifestyle Network, the Ak-Chin Indian Community and the Earnhardt Auto Centers Road Team will cover all of the NHSFR events.
CLN Community & Event Sponsor