PUEBLO, Colo. (September 23, 2020) – PBR (Professional Bull Riders) has announced a first-of-its kind event, the PBR Air Force Reserve Cowboys for a Cause, which will take place on the USS Lexington in Corpus Christi, Texas and be broadcast on CBS Television Network Saturday, December 5 at 12:00 pm ET / 11:00 am CT. The special event will also be covered on CBS Sports Network pre-shows on Friday night and Saturday in the lead-up.
PBR Air Force Reserve Cowboys for a Cause is an invitational team event featuring five teams of three cowboys, riding to support military members and their families through a new charity initiative.
PBR will construct a bull riding arena on the 872-foot long launch deck on top of the famed air craft carrier known as “The Blue Ghost,” bringing in 300 tons of dirt and steel and more than 15 miles of copper and fiber optic cables to support the event and television broadcast. Bucking bulls will be brought on board via the ship’s still-functioning aircraft elevator, the same system that brought planes up to the flight deck from the hangar during battle. Aircraft aboard the ship will be used as set pieces around the arena.
The exhibition event will not count for world points. While the event is closed to the general public, PBR will offer exclusive viewing for VIP guests, ultimate experience ticket packages, and members of the military.
This special event marks the launch of PBR Cowboys for a Cause: Every Second Counts, a new PBR initiative that will raise money for charitable organizations.
PBR and its sponsors will donate to Operation Homefront, an organization providing financial support, housing and various resources to U.S. military families, for each second each cowboy stays on his bull, for up to eight seconds, the PBR standard for a qualified bull ride. PBR chose a military charity as the first beneficiary of the new program to acknowledge and thank members of the armed forces and their families for their sacrifices made for our country.
“As we get ready to close out a very challenging year, PBR wants to present an early holiday gift of an unforgettable bull riding event atop the grand and historic USS Lexington to the fans who support us through thick and thin and to military families who sacrifice so much for everyone,” said PBR Commissioner Sean Gleason.
“While we’ve bucked bulls in Times Square, on Huntington Beach, and in the middle of Hollywood Boulevard, the deck of the USS Lexington has long been on our list of iconic places for the most exciting eight seconds in sports. We’re excited and honored to partner with the Air Force Reserve to bring this once-in-a-lifetime event to life. Air Force Reserve’s motto is ‘Fly, Fight, & Win,’ which represents the spirit embodied in our own ‘Be Cowboy’ mantra.”
“We are excited to partner with PBR and the USS Lexington on this special event,” said Dan Weinberg, EVP, Programming, CBS Sports. “We always work with our partners to innovate and bring unique content to our viewers and this showcase exemplifies that commitment.”
PBR, the first major professional sport to safely return to competition and then welcome fans inside an arena during the COVID-19 pandemic, brought fans a team competition earlier this season. The Monster Energy Team Challenge competed in closed, televised events from South Point Arena in Las Vegas throughout June, and then in mid-July hosted fans in the arena in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, with new fan safety protocols in place.
PBR will bring its industry-leading COVID-19 protocols to Corpus Christi for the event.
A select number of fans can experience this special event firsthand. The ultimate experience, including hotel, premium food and beverage, and VIP access, is available for purchase at PBR.COM.
About PBR (Professional Bull Riders)
PBR is the world’s premier bull riding organization. More than 700 bull riders compete in more than 200 events annually across the televised PBR Unleash the Beast Tour (UTB), which features the top 35 bull riders in the world; the PBR Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour (PWVT); the PBR Touring Pro Division (TPD); and the PBR’s international circuits in Australia, Brazil, Canada and Mexico. PBR’s digital assets include RidePass, which is home to Western sports. PBR is a subsidiary of IMG, a global leader in sports, fashion, events and media. For more information, visit PBR.com, or follow on Facebook at Facebook.com/PBR, Twitter at Twitter.com/PBR, and YouTube at YouTube.com/PBR.
About the USS Lexington
The USS Lexington, nicknamed “The Blue Ghost,” is an Essex-class aircraft carrier built during World War II for the United States Navy. Commissioned in 1943, she set more records than any other Essex Class carrier in the history of naval aviation. The ship was the Navy’s longest-serving working carrier when decommissioned in 1991. During World War II, as part of the Fifth Fleet, the carrier participated in nearly every major operation in the Pacific Theater, spending 21 months in combat. Her planes destroyed 372 enemy aircraft in the air, and 475 more on the ground. She sank or destroyed 300,000 tons of enemy cargo and damaged an additional 600,000 tons. The ship’s guns shot down 15 planes and assisted in downing five more. The Japanese had reported LEXINGTON sunk no less than four times. Yet, each time she returned to fight again, leading the propagandist Tokyo Rose to nickname her “The Blue Ghost.” The name is a tribute to the ship and the crew and air groups serving aboard her. After the war, LEXINGTON was briefly decommissioned (1947-1955). When reactivated, she operated primarily with the Seventh Fleet out of San Diego, California. Although not involved in actual combat, LEXINGTON kept an offshore vigil during tensions in Formosa, Laos, and Cuba. In 1962, she sailed into Pensacola, Florida, and began training operations, eventually being officially designated CVT-16, Navy Training Carrier. Corpus Christi is now the permanent home to this national treasure.
About Operation Homefront
Founded in 2002, Operation Homefront is a national nonprofit organization whose mission is to build strong, stable, and secure military families so that they can thrive – not simply struggle to get by – in the communities they have worked so hard to protect. Recognized for superior performance by leading independent charity oversight groups, over 90 percent of Operation Homefront expenditures go directly to programs that support tens of thousands of military families each year. Operation Homefront provides critical financial assistance, transitional and permanent housing and family support services to prevent short-term needs from turning into chronic, long-term struggles. Thanks to the generosity of our donors and the support from thousands of volunteers, Operation Homefront proudly serves America’s military families. For more information, visit OperationHomefront.org.
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