Attica Rodeo

Friday, August 4, 2017 at 2:54 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, events, Attica Rodeo, Attica.

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The 60th annual Attica Rodeo kicked off Thursday evening to a small but mighty crowd.

Performances at the rodeo grounds, Exchange Street, Attica, begin at 8 tonight and Saturday – gates open at 6 p.m., with matinee performances Saturday at 1 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. – gates open at 11 a.m. and noon, respectively.

Contestants compete in more than eight rodeo events including bareback and saddle bronc riding, tie-down roping, cowgirls breakaway, barrel racking, bull riding and more. Although all performances contain the same events, participants are different.

Tickets are $18 for adults, $8 for children 6 to 12 years old, and free for kids 5 years old and younger.

For more information visit http://www.atticarodeo.us/index.html

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Sunday, August 7, 2016 at 10:43 am
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, events, Attica Rodeo, Attica.

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See our Facebook page for more photos.

For Saturday afternoon events, see our sister site The Batavian.

Saturday, August 6, 2016 at 4:42 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, events, Attica Rodeo, Attica.

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See our Facebook page for more photos.

Friday, August 5, 2016 at 12:46 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, events, Attica Rodeo, Attica.

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The Attica Rodeo kicked off its 59th annual show Thursday night at the rodeo grounds on Exchange Street in Attica. 

The event continues tonight, with gates opening at 6 and the rodeo starting at 8. Events are also scheduled for Saturday, 1 and 8 p.m.; and Sunday, 2 p.m.. 

See related: Attica Rodeo: Riding into town for the 59th year

See our Facebook page for more photos.

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Tuesday, August 2, 2016 at 11:09 am
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, events, Attica Rodeo, Attica.

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File photo.

Get ready for a bronc-busting weekend at the 59th annual Attica Rodeo. 

Gates open Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 6 p.m. with the Grand Entry kicking off the event at 8 p.m. Friday. Other show times include afternoon performances Saturday at 1 p.m. (gates open at 11 a.m.),and Sunday at 2 p.m. (gates open at noon).

This cost is $18 for adults, $8 for children 6 to 12 years old, and free for children 5 years old and younger. Additionally, the matinee shows Saturday and Sunday are free for children 6 to 12 years old with a paid adult ticket. Tickets can be purchased online through Ticketfly or at the gate. Weekend and group rates are available upon request. Rodeo officials suggest getting to the grounds an hour to an hour-and-a-half early for parking and seating.

Each performance is approximately three hours. Following the rodeo Thursday, Friday and Saturday night is a free Cowboy Party for spectators and contestants.

All shows contain the same events with different contestants, including: bareback and saddle bronc riding, tie-down roping, cowgirls' breakaway, team roping, barrel racing, steer wrestling, bull riding and junior bull riding, and cattle penning. Additionally, there will be clown acts, specialty performers and a calf scramble for kids to participate in.

For more information visit the Attica Rodeo & Show Association website.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016 at 6:11 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, events, Attica Rodeo, Attica.
Event Date and Time: 
July 27, 2016 - 6:30pm to 8:30pm

A Good Ride: Growing Up Rodeo – an evening with Attica Rodeo cowboys, families and friends. The event will be held at the Attica Hisotrical Society, 130 Main St., Attica, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. July 27.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016 at 5:46 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, events, Attica, Attica Rodeo.

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The Arts Council for Wyoming County (ACWC) and the Attica Rodeo & Show Association created an exhibit in 2010 that features the the 59-year-old Attica Rodeo.

From July 13 through Sept. 10, A Good Ride: Arts & Traditions of the Attica Rodeo, will be at the Attica Historical Society, 130 Main St., Attica, Wednesdays and Saturdays from 1 to 4 p.m., and by appointment.

This free exhibit delves not only into the history and traditions of the local event, but the American rodeo as well. 

The Attica Rodeo began in 1957 when a handful of local residents went to a horse sale in Jamestown, Pa., and bought four horses. Dave Wheeler, Dave Leslie, Bernie Buckenmeyer, and Gene Reding started the rodeo with an arena a little smaller than it is today. While there was a fence around the “stage,” there were no bleachers. The people would pull their vehicles up to the fence and sit on the hoods. Legend has it, the second row seating was on the roofs of their cars. The lighting system consisted of spot lights on old poles and the food stand was a 12 by 16 foot leaky shed roof. 

The exhibit features the photography of Brody Wheeler, giving a window into the world of bronc and bull riders, barrel racers, ropers, announcers, clowns, stock companies and much more.

Co-presented by the Attica Historical Society and the ACWC.

While the event is free, donations are accepted.

For more information call Karen Canning at the Arts Council at (585) 237-3517 or visit www.artswyco.org. To reach the Attica Historical Society, call Camilla VanderLinden at (585) 591-2161.

Monday, August 10, 2015 at 5:40 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, events, Attica Rodeo, Attica.

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He’s an oasis, a safe haven from a 2,000 pound storm of a bucking bronco. He provides a distraction, a diversion, if you will. He is the comic relief in an occasional tense situation. His job is to entertain and make the audience laugh; more importantly, his job is to keep the riders safe.

“You’ll see bull fighters and you’ll see me, the clown,” said rodeo clown and barrel man Marshall Greene. “I will get in the barrel to help distract the bull from the cowboys so they can get up and get away, that’s kinda my job. Also to entertain the crowd, acting the fool, kind of like acting like most of the husbands out here when the wives aren’t around.

“As a barrel man, I’m the third bull fighter,” Greene said. “Kind of like a tree in a game of tag.”

By trade, Greene is a firefighter and a paramedic, yet he missed the draw of a rodeo, the adrenaline rush of riding bareback. Although Greene has only been a clown for four years, he’s ridden the circuit since he was 15 years old – 1991. When he quit ridding, he missed the rodeo, that’s when his friend Robby Hodges talked him into being a rodeo clown.

“I went and clowned my first rodeo in Louisiana and now I do this full time,” Greene said. “Last year I did 33 rodeos, this year I’m doing 46. Even though my wife and I travel all over the country together, she said I’m the only clown around here.”

Greene said, quite cheekily, getting hit by bulls isn’t the “safest thing in the world’’; there’s no formal schooling, it’s complete on-the-job training.

“Being a barrel person is an adrenaline rush,” Greene said. “When you see a bull come to the barrel, it’s the barrel getting hit, it’s what everyone likes to see. Some people like to jump out of airplanes, I like to get run over by a Volkswagen. It’s an extreme sport.

“People just don’t realize how much fun this is,” Greene said. “This is so much more fun than getting on the back of a bucking horse, I get to interact with the crowd. What other job can you do that you make dang good money to make people laugh and get your adrenaline rush too. This is absolutely the best job in the world. It’s great. I love it.”

Greene said that every clown borrows bits and pieces of other clowns acts, but his, The Moonshiner, act is a complete original; this is the act he is known for. However, speaking with Greene proved to be an exercise of tongue in cheek.

“If you’re wondering why I talk so slow,” the Summerville, Ga., native said. “It’s because of my Irish accent. I was in Chicago last year and this woman asked me if I was from Ireland because I had an Irish accent and I said ‘I sure am, just a bit south of Chattanooga’.”

Greene simply couldn’t wait to perform at the Attica Rodeo, saying he was ecstatic when he was asked.
“One of my good friends Dusty Meyers was a clown here last year and when he found out I was coming here, he called me and said I’m going to enjoy it so much,” Greene said. “My whole job tonight is to make someone wet their pants.”

According to Greene, while liked being both a firefighter and a paramedic, he enjoy’s being a rodeo clown so much more.

“I use to ride bareback, but now I’m just a grease paint warrior I guess,” Greene said.

The 58th annual Attica Rodeo closed out Sunday evening. And as the crowd left and the dust settled, organizers breathed deeply, looking forward to having today off; for tomorrow, planning for next year’s rodeo begins.

For more photos see our Facebook page.

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Sunday, August 9, 2015 at 7:35 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, events, Attica Rodeo, Attica.

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For more photos of Saturday's events at the Attica Rodeo, see our Facebook page.

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Saturday, August 8, 2015 at 5:49 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, events, Attica Rodeo, Attica.

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Photos from Friday evening's Attica Rodeo events.

The rodeo continues tonight at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m.. 

See related: Attica Rodeo: Entertaining families for almost six decades. For more photos see our Facebook page.

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Friday, August 7, 2015 at 5:19 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, events, Attica Rodeo, Attica.

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The rodeo is built around events of what the cowboy use to have to do on the open range. Calf roping, bulldogging, calf penning, even bull and bronc riding all have their roots on actual farms or ranches. While breaking a horse is done much differently nowadays, and branding is not as widespread a practice, cowboys now compete to see who is the fastest.

The 58th annual Attica Rodeo kicked off Thursday evening under a cloud-dotted sky and a cool breeze. Gene Rautenstrauch, of Attica, and a 28 year member of the Rodeo, said the event started in 1957.

“It started with a bunch of boys getting together,” Rautenstrauch said. “They brought their own livestock and put on a show. They had no bleachers then, just a snow fence to mark the arena. We’d have cars circle the arena and use their lights for lighting and the spectators would sit on the hoods of their cars and watch.”

Although the first ticket was just a quarter in 1957, rodeo officials said the event has grown more and more over the years. Added bleachers and events have made the rodeo a hot summer destination.

Part of the International Professional Rodeo Association (IPRA), American Professional Rodeo Association (APRA) and Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association (PRCA), the Attica Rodeo is a not-for-profit organization and its proceeds go back into the rodeo to “keep things going” or the money is donated to community organizations. 

“We (Rautenstrauch and his wife) started out just trail riding and Dave Wheeler really got us going,” Rautenstrauch said. “He said that he was in the Attica Rodeo Club so we came down and watched the events and have been involved ever since.

“Years ago I use to team pen,” Rautenstrauch said. “It’s an event that we brought into the rodeo that most other rodeos don’t have. A team of three has 90 seconds to separate and get numbered calves into a pen without going over the foul line. It’s difficult but it’s fun.” 

Dean Wright said he’s been in the rodeo forever and a member of Attica Rodeo for 57 years. But he only started team roping 10 to 15 years ago.

“I started after I retired,” Wright said. “I go to a few rodeos in the state just for fun. I’ve raised quarter horses for years.”

According to Wright, several of the cowboys who are campaigning come to the Northern states during the summer and the Southern states during the winter. There are 10 to 12 participants in each category, with approximately a dozen events. While there is no age requirement to ride in a rodeo, Wright said you have to be in pretty good shape to compete.

The smaller steers used for events are Mexican Corriente, they are a breed that does not get very large – weighing a mere 200 pounds – and their horns can be no larger than the size of a 50-cent piece.

While the Attica Rodeo provides entertainment for people of all ages, the rodeo is more than just a sport. It is a chance to learn about equine health and educate people.

Jim Miller, owner of Green Mountain, Attica, has been in the equine business for 35 years. The company manufactures supplements for the animals.

“Because horses no longer roam the range like they use to, the animals now need specific nutrient requirements. Our supplements are balanced for a horse's diet,” Miller said. “We have domesticated the horse and locked them into a pasture so they can’t run millions of acres to get their nutrition. In the Great Lakes Region, where we are, the soil is deficient in cobalt, selenium, and iodine –  three trace minerals – if you don’t have that, the horse will have health problems.

"Selenium is good for breeding. Cobalt is necessary to make hemoglobin in the blood, and iodine keeps metabolism up. If a horse lacks iodine they can become obese horses and get something similar to diabetes in humans.” 

Not only is horse health an all-year endeavor, preparation for the annual event is a yearlong process as well.

“As soon as the last animal is penned Sunday night, the next Tuesday, we start planning for the next year,” Rautenstrauch said. “We start contacting vendors and sponsors, repair equipment and take care of the grounds. It takes a lot of work and effort.

"There are 60-plus club member volunteers as well as others that come and help. About two weeks before the event, inmates from the prison (Wyoming Correctional Facility) come out and help with cleaning up and mowing the grounds.”

Rautenstrauch  puts is simply: Just come out and enjoy the outdoors and the atmosphere; “Cowboy people are the best people going.”

Events include:

    • Bareback bronc riding: Most cowboys agree that this is the most physically demanding event. To stay aboard the horse, the rider uses a rigging made of leather placed atop the horse’s withers and is secured with a cinch. Not only does the cowboy have to stay on the animal, he is also judged on his spurring techniques.

    • Saddle bronc riding: This event evolved from the task of breaking and training horses to work the cattle ranches in the Old West. Many cowboys claim this is the toughest event to master because of the technical skills necessary for success. The objective is a fluid, synchronized ride with the movement of the horse.

    • Steer wrestling: This is also known as bulldogging. The cowboy must be both quick and strong for this event. The steer wrestler has to use strength and technique to wrestle an animal that generally weighs twice as much as the cowboy. The catch is that both steer and cowboy are often traveling at approximately 30 mph.

    • Team roping: This event requires both close cooperation and timing between two skilled ropers – a header and a heeler – as well as their horses. This event originated from when cowboys needed to treat or brand large steers that proved too difficult for one man to handle.

    • Team penning: Teams of three horse and rider combinations work to separate particular cows and herd them into the penning area in under 60 seconds. 

    • Barrel racing: Speed is the essence of this event. It is the cooperation between the horse and rider riding a cloverleaf pattern around three barrels.

    • Calf roping: On working ranches in the Old West, when calves were sick or injured, cowboys had to rope and immobilize them quickly for veterinary treatment. Ranch hands prided themselves on the speed with which they could rope and tie calves. Eventually, this turned into informal contests and is now a mainstay at rodeos.

    • Breakaway roping: This is a variation of calf roping where the calf is roped, but not thrown and tied. 

    • Bull riding: This demands intense physical power, supreme mental toughness and courage. The bull rider may only use one hand to stay atop a 2,000-pound bull during an eight-second ride. Balance, flexibility, coordination and quick reflexes are essential in bull riding.

The rodeo continues tonight at 8, Saturday at 1 and 8 p.m., and Sunday at 2 p.m. 

For more information visit http://www.atticarodeo.us/

For more photos see our Facebook page.

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Friday, August 7, 2015 at 11:26 am
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, events, Attica Rodeo, Attica.

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The 58th Attica Rodeo kicked off Thursday night beginning with opening ceremonies.

The Rodeo continues today at 8 p.m., Saturday at 2 and 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m.. The gates open at 6 p.m. for the evening show and 11 a.m. for the afternoon show.

For more photos visit our Facebook page.

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Monday, August 3, 2015 at 9:52 am
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, Attica, Attica Rodeo.

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Sen. Patrick Gallivan recently presented Mike Grevelding of the Attica Rodeo with a resolution passed by the New York State Senate, honoring the rodeo for being the recipient of the 2014 Rodeo of the Year Award by the American Professional Rodeo Association. 
This year's edition of the rodeo runs from Aug 6-9.

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