NAMPA, Idaho — The 106th Snake River Stampede Rodeo is back in action.
The Ford Idaho Center was decked out in pink Wednesday for the Stampede for a Cure night to raise awareness and funds for breast cancer prevention.
“It’s great the cowboys are ready, we’re ready. Everybody needed the money so they’re grateful that they’re having rodeos this year, and it means so much to us to have it back. This is our 106th Annual Rodeo this year so we are filling the house,” said Dan Ward, vice president of the Snake River Stampede Rodeo.
Rodeo season is finally in full swing after a tough year for a lot of the cowboys. Many didn't have a place to compete so they got creative to stay in shape.
"At first, it was nice because we got to be home and spend time with our families," said Saddle Bronc contestant Mitch Pollock. "But after a month of not going to any rodeos, it got pretty boring so we just had to stay active. I had a bunch of practice horses. I was getting on, and I put on my own rodeos."
Financially, this is where a lot of the cowboys earn their living which made a year without rodeos even more difficult.
That all changed Wednesday. The night's top 12 scorers will come back to the finals on Saturday for a chance to win it all.
“It would mean everything. I have had this on my bucket list to win and I have made the final three times, and I haven't been able to win it yet so hopefully this year," Pollock said.
But, just to have the wildest, fastest show on earth back in Nampa this year makes the rodeo community happy.
"[It's] One big party so we are celebrating this year," said Ward. "This is a huge rodeo for this time of year. We are getting down to a couple more months left in the season and everybody is pushing to make the finals so this rodeo right here, it can be a big one."