Little Britches Rodeo is as tried and true a tradition as the sport of rodeo itself. It has grown from a single,
annual event back in 1952, to more than 150 rodeos held in 26 states throughout the country. Each year, Cedaredge
is proud to host the longest continuous Little Britches Rodeo in the world. |
There are four divisions for contestants, Junior Girls and Junior Boys – ages 8 through 13, and Senior Girls and
Senior Boys – ages 14 through 18. Rodeos were born from the day to day working experience of our American cowboys
and competition among the cowboys led to the development of the events at present day rodeos. At a Little Britches
Rodeo, you can see a variety of events including Bull Riding, Saddle Bronc Riding, Bareback Riding, Steer Wrestling,
Breakaway Roping, Team Roping, Barrel Racing, Polebending, Girls Goat Tying and others. Participants compete for
prizes and cash, but they are all winners at building character, self reliance and good sportsmanship. Little Britches
enables young people to set goals and then challenges them to accomplish these goals through discipline, organization,
and physical fitness.
No Little Britches Rodeo would be complete without that crowd favorite - Mutton Bustin’. In order to qualify, a child
must be between 4 and 8 years old and weigh less than 65 pounds. The scenario usually goes something like this. A kid
just a few years out of diapers stands near an anxious parent who is giving some last words of advice. He (or she) looks
like they would like to disappear under the wide brim of their cowboy hat. Then the hat is plucked off their head and
replaced with a helmet and a rodeo hand places them on the back of an unhappy sheep jerking around in a small pen. The
gate comes up and the sheep shoots into the arena with the child using various techniques to cling on tightly. The ride
rarely lasts longer than a few seconds, usually coming to an abrupt end when the sheep cuts right and the child slips left,
tumbling into the dirt. The crowd cheers wildly and the young buckaroo usually gets up and grins. Every child is a winner,
walking away with a shiny new belt buckle, and the love and pride of family and friends.
For over 60 years, the town has welcomed these young athletes with open arms. A parade, classic car show, and street dance
add to the celebration and large crowds gather to cheer on the dedication and competitive spirit of the participants. The
parade is held on Saturday and showcases many of the participants along with local entries. The last entry is a fire truck
and long time attendees know that it’s time to duck into a store or restaurant if you don’t want a good soaking. It’s our
volunteer fire department’s way of cooling off the crowd on a warm summer day!
Don’t miss out on the fun, mark your calendar now for July, and join us for this Western tradition and celebration of athletes,
both two legged and four legged.