It was the second Rodeo Day at the library hosted by the Ute Mountain Roundup Rodeo committee during the week of the big event. Library volunteer Barbara Loof read cowboy-themed stories to the children, and members of the committee gave them quick lessons in line dancing and steer roping. Committee members gave away tickets to the opening night of the rodeo on Thursday, which is Family Night.
This year’s Miss Rodeo Colorado, Kelsie Winslow, and the Ute Mountain Rodeo Queen, Tegan Duncan, spoke to the kids about their jobs and answered questions. Several children asked how they could become cowboys, and some dressed the part.
“You don’t have to ride horses or anything like that to be a cowboy,” Winslow said. “You’re a cowboy in your heart.”
A “true cowboy,” she said, must be kind to others, respect animals and enjoy playing outside.
Duncan talked about the events she would participate in at the rodeo and encouraged attendees to see her and her attendant, Cassie Finley, at the fairgrounds.
After the Q&A session, kids got a quick lesson in line dancing, to the tune of an upbeat song called “Five Six Seven Eight.” Not everyone got the hang of dancing, but most excelled at moves that involved jumping.
Finally the group of children went outside the library, where they practiced roping with a model steer and rode on stick ponies.
The Ute Mountain Roundup Rodeo begins Thursday, but the festivities will start Wednesday night with a chuck wagon dinner and a carnival at the Montezuma County Fairgrounds.