Garrett Thorgramson laughs with Mike Arnio as the two work to get the stirrups and saddle ready before his rookie saddle bronc ride on Wednesday. This was Thorgramson’s second ever competition saddle bronc ride, last week being his first. One stirrup broke on the second buck of his ride dropping him out early in his eight seconds.
The Wednesday night rodeo series brought spectators from around the community as well as from out of state to the Johnson County Fairgrounds on July 15. Rodeos are scheduled for July 22 and all four Wednesdays in August.
The fence behind the chutes is chalk full of people, saddles and strung occasionally on the fences, pants. The pants, chaps, and ropes move on and off the fences as competitors prepare for and complete their rides. Most return back to the behind the chutes to help the other riders even after they have finished themselves.
Norris Graves rocks back and forth in his saddle to continue final preparations before his ride on Wednesday night. Many bronc riders use resin, made from tree sap, to add some stickiness to their saddles and chaps as an extra tool for staying on board the horse. Bull riders also use the resin but on the ropes that they hold.
Callie Munsick looks out over the arena from the crows nest between events on Wednesday. Munsick would lean out to find out which bronc rider was up next according to the judges and people working the chutes directly below the nest.
From left, brothers Ethan and Micah Frasier, and Phillip Rising Sun look up to the crows nest to find out how many tie down ropers are left before Ethan’s make-up ride on Wednesday. The bronc ride categories were split up by roping events like tie down roping and breakaway roping.
The Wednesday night rodeo series is running this summer through both July and August. The rodeos include everything from roping to rough stock competitions. The rodeos start at 6 p.m. and have competitions in both arenas to keep things moving.