Cowgirls and cowboys saddle up for the second day of the Badlands Little Britches Rodeo

RAPID CITY, S.D. – Young cowboys and cowgirls saddled up to compete in the second day of the Badlands Little Britches Rodeo (LBR) Saturday at the James Kjerstad Event Center. The Badlands LBR is an event in cooperation with the National Little Britches Rodeo Association, which is a youth organization for kids ages 5-18.

Some participants might be new to the arena, competing the first year that they’re old enough to. For others, it’s their first chance at a run before high school rodeo kicks off.

“I’ve just grown up doing it and I just love the bond you get with your horse and all the friends you make in rodeo,” Payton Routier, Badlands LBR competitor, said. “It’s just kind of a big family.”

The Badlands LBR continues at 9 a.m. Sunday and it’s free for people to stop in and watch.

Badlands LBR Events:

  • Team roping
  • Ribbon roping
  • Breakaway roping
  • Bull riding
  • Flag racing
  • Goat tying
  • Barrel racing
  • Pole bending
  • Trail course
  • Goat untying
  • Bareback riding

Photos from the Badland LBR:

Samuel Charles O’Rourke, parent of two competitors:

Why do you enjoy these competitions?

“I enjoy it just as much as they do. I grew up around rodeo and horses and livestock. So I just love to see them compete. Each year they get better and better, and the better they get, the further I want to take them. So It brings me just as much joy as it does them. So if they’re willing to, they want to keep doing it, I’ll keep pushing them.”

How many years have they been competing?

“My oldest daughter’s 11. I think we started taking her on when she was three. So about eight years for her. My younger daughter’s eight. She’s probably five years now. So as soon as they’re big enough, they start putting them on horseback, taking them to competitions. Now they’re starting to go to more and more events , so their skill level is getting better.”

What do you enjoy about Badlands LBR?

“It’s close by. Of course, the venue is top notch. The people that put this on plan it out very well. I think they’re doing a good job of trying to include the local communities as well, because a lot of people come from out of state, too. But I think that’s the whole focus of what they’re doing is to try to get more people involved in the community that are from this area. So it’s starting to catch on.”

What are the benefits of participating in LBR?

“I think what we’re doing is is pretty much a blessing. You get to spend time with our kids, teach them about horses, watch them compete, you know. And not just my kids but all these kids here –they learn how to take care of the horses. It’s a big responsibility and rodeo is a lot about life skills. It helps them after getting into adulthood and, of course, takes a lot of responsibility to take care of your horses and be organized. It’s just, to me, it’s all-around positive.”

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