On June 28, Prescott Frontier Days begins along with the annual Prescott Rodeo 2016. This year marks 129 for the PRCA event, which is billed as the World’s Oldest Rodeo. Tens of thousands come from the state, across the country and around the world to attend the festivities and experience the heart-stopping thrills of the eight Pro Rodeo performances.
History of the World’s Oldest Rodeo
The first rodeo was organized by local business professionals and took place on July 4, 1888. The event provided the opportunity for local cowboys and ranchers to demonstrate their skills to the public. Participating winners were awarded cash prizes. Unlike today, the old-time events played out on a simple barren tract of land in Forbing Park. Designated areas were sectioned off with ropes to contain livestock and establish the perimeter of the arena.
By 1913, the Yavapai County Fair Association named the festivities Prescott Frontier Days. The term “rodeo” is Spanish for “roundup” and was not associated with the Western activities until 1916. In order to attract larger crowds celebrity cowboys, which included Tom Mix and Will Rogers often attended the PRCA events.
Prescott Rodeo 2016 Events
The World’s Oldest Rodeo is sanctioned by the Professional Rodeo Cowboy’s Association or PRCA. Performances include both judged and timed events. Cowboys and cowgirls compete against one another for the highest score or the shortest time. Top athletes walk away with cash prizes and commemorative belt buckles. Each of the eight Pro Rodeo performances includes:
• Bareback riding
• Saddle bronc riding
• Bull riding
• Steer wrestling
• Tie-down roping
• Team roping
• Barrel racing
The performances are scheduled to commence on:
Tuesday, June 28, 2016- 7:30 P.M.
Wednesday, June 29, 2016-7:30 P.M.
Thursday, June 30, 2016-7:30 P.M.
Friday, July 1, 2016-7:30 P.M.
Saturday, July 2, 2016-1:30 P.M.
Saturday July 2, 2016-7:30 P.M.
Sunday, July 3, 2016-7:30 P.M.
Monday, July 4, 2016-1:30 P.M.
The gala Prescott Rodeo 2016 parade will travel down the streets of Prescott on Saturday, July 2, at 9 A.M. Award-winning Country Western vocalist Tanya Tucker is scheduled to act as Grand Marshall. Other events include:
• The Happy Hearts Rodeo for Exceptional Children-June 28
• Kiwanas Kiddie Parade-Courthouse Plaza-July 1
• Annual Rodeo Dance-June 30, July 1 & 2 from 8:00 P.M. to 1:00 A.M.
• Courthouse Plaza Arts & Crafts Show-July 2, 3 & 4
• Cowboy Church-Prescott Rodeo Grounds-July 3 at 8:30 A.M.
The Cowboy Lifestyle Network, the Ak-Chin Indian Community and Earnhardt Auto Centers Rodeo Team plan on providing coverage of the Pro Rodeo events.