Let ‘er Buck!

Let ‘er Buck 2016!


The Pendleton Round Up Rodeo is off and running!


Once again its time to Boot Scoot BOOGIE!


Its time to Rock…


And Roll!


Gotta love those pick up guys who get you off your Wild Ride:)


Yup…rodeo week is here…its that time of year when you can join in and see people you only see once a year…its a time to celebrate the end of harvest and its time for a rodeo that is rich in heritage…steeped in tradition and full of history…in this small town they call Pendleton.


Son Greg is following in the footsteps of those who went before him…


His dad, WB, and my dad, his grandfather, by working in the arena during the rodeo…


A big job to fill as our arena guys are in charge of fences, unexpected wrecks, livestock with lots of unforeseen issues…


They work hard to keep the livestock safe and everyone else safe as well as themselves. Photo above is of son Greg going airborne last year…he was banged up but ok!


Round Up is an amazing week…we all volunteer one way or another…we all grumble that it is too crowded and well grumble grumble grumble…we should leave town for the week…


Round Up becomes a part of who you are when you grow up here…its in your heart…its in your blood and each year you swear this is the last year but…it calls your heart back home and thats what it’s all about…along with amazing cowboys and cowgirls who get out there and live it by working hard and playing tough!


And thats it…I’ve lived here forever and like a moth drawn to the flame…I’m home!


Rock on Pendleton with the Rhythm of Round Up…and Let ‘er Buck!

The Pendleton Round Up…Round Two!

The Pendleton Round Up…Round Two…Here We Go!


As you pass through the gates into the rodeo grounds, you immediately find yourself next to the South Grandstand, and as you look up towards the top of it, about half way down, you will see the Winner’s Plague. These cowboys and cowgirls were the winners in their events at the Round Up in 2012…the large plague proudly displays their names next to their events. Winning Pendleton is an honor as the rodeo is one of the top three rodeos along with Calgary and Cheyenne.


What sets the Pendleton Round-Up apart from the other great rodeos in America is its aesthetic. That word implies art, but also history and culture.


The first Pendleton Round-Up was to be “a frontier exhibition of picturesque pastimes, Indian and military spectacles, cowboy racing and bronco busting for the championship of the Northwest.” It turned out to be that and more. For the initial show, all stores closed. “The largest crowd in Pendleton’s history,” 7,000 strong, showed up for the first show on September 29, 1910, a newspaper writer reported. “The words ‘Pendleton’ and Round-Up’ are on the lips of thousands and will continue to be for months and years to come…The Round-Up is a whirlwind success.” Souvenir program from The 1913 Round-Up said the rodeo was growing. And grow it did.

Two decades later, patrons showed up from 36 states and eight foreign countries. The following two years the Round Up was not held, because of World War II, once the war was over, the attendance climbed again, eventually reaching 50,000 or more for the four-day show. “Success bred success and the Round Up stayed in high gear,” says the book “Let ‘er Buck! A brief history of the Pendleton Round Up.”

The key to the success of the rodeo and its many attendant activities is community participation – volunteers. Indian participation has been a strong attraction, too, in the Round-Up arena, at Happy Canyon, in the Indian Village and in the Westward Ho! Parade. Long before women’s lib, the fairer sex got into the act at the Round-Up – cowgirls in the early days of the Round-Up could be as tough as men. In 1914 Bertha Blanchette, wife of cowboy Del Blanchette, came within 12 points of winning the all-around title.

Midway through the Round Up’s colorful history, a Eugene newspaper summed it up with a characterization that remains applicable today: “In good times and bad, Pendleton has gone on with the Round Up. People over on the Umatilla have always been willing to take a chance. Maybe that’s the real cowboy spirit. Maybe it’s a little bit tougher brand of civic spirit. Anyhow, in Pendleton, the show goes on.”


Having volunteers who want to make a difference, while helping make the rodeo a success, makes Pendleton very unique It has often been said by the directors of both Happy Canyon and The Pendleton Round Up that the volunteers are the glue, as they strive to give their time to make the Round-Up the greatest rodeo on earth. Through the year the volunteers clean up the rodeo grounds and the barns, adding a fresh coat of paint where it is needed, and fix anything and everything that needs to be fixed.


And so it begins with slack on Monday of Round Up week. This year there did not appear to be as many contestants, as slack often will begin on Saturday or Sunday…by Monday morning it is in full-swing. This year it did not begin until Monday afternoon.


I enjoy going to slack in some ways more than the actual rodeo as you see true life…the last minute details coming together. Whether you are a contestant or on the Round Up board of directors or working on the arena crew, you work hard…making sure that everything goes off in sync, without a hitch.


The bucking chute crew is on stand by…but I bet they’re ready to go at the drop of a hat!


The chutes look a bit different on rodeo day!


Family and friends watching slack runs in the shade to escape the heat. This year Round Up week was hot, the usual breeze did not stir through the stands, so you watched the rodeo, fanning yourself with the program, while feeling beads of sweat rolling down your back or face!


Contestants also waiting in the shade, talking to old friends, trying to relax as they wait for their number to be called.


More cowboys are arriving…saddling up horses…and will soon be ready to go!


From a rather quiet slack day to a rock and roll rodeo day! Cowboys warming up in the confines of a much smaller space in the arena before their event.


I will have one more post on The Round Up…so stay tuned!


In the mean time…Let ‘er Buck!!!

Behind The Scenes Of The Pendleton Round Up…Let’er Buck 2013!

Behind The Scenes Of


The Pendleton Round Up…..Let ‘er Buck! 2013 Style!


This is the first of two blog entries on the rodeo this year…you know me…I take lots of pictures so hang tight, there is more to share!

16367620729_Let Er Buck

This year marked the 103rd year of the Pendleton Round Up. We that live here are proud of our heritage and the years of participation in the rodeo, in a quiet little town called Pendleton.


I love capturing the life of rodeo in Pendleton and slack days a few days before the rodeo begins are perfect. It’s fun to capture the mood of slack, it’s sort of laid back but somewhat tense too as the arena crew and the contestants are getting the squeaks ironed out…the cowboys and cowgirls are more at ease and have the time to socially connect with the cowboy families and friends they see on the road.


This bronze plaque is below the bronze bucking horse at the main gate and explains the meaning of Let ‘er Buck and the classic image of the cowboy on the bucking horse. Double click on it and it will double in size to read it.


Often I will say, this year I’m going to take a break from attending the rodeo and go to the beach for the week…and then as August rolls into September…I begin to feel the magnetic pull of the yearly rodeo tradition. Heart felt memories return, flooding my heart with good stuff…stirring the spirit of Pendleton that I carry down deep in my soul, it’s part of what makes me who I am…next thing I know, I find myself at the rodeo once again celebrating with the crowd, the locals, my neighbors and friends.


The bronze Let ‘er Buck statue at the Round Up gate…a great work of art and incredible to see in person…things you see only in Pendleton!


As Round Up memories are stirred, the ones I cherish the most are the ones I have of Dad and I, such as taking our horses into the rodeo grounds before the rodeo and then bringing them home early Sunday morning after the rodeo was over. Or how Mom and Dad moved to town for the week to a hotel, with a swimming pool and I got to swim and skip school…oh geez I hope none of my teachers are reading this…I was really sick at home:) The parades that I rode in every year of my life until I was married…the Dress Up Parade which used to be at night and the Westward Ho Parade. As I grew up I was asked to be one of two pendent bearers for the Queen and Court…I loved doing that as we went to many parades out of town too and I had a western cowgirl jacket with matching slacks, hat and boots were dyed to match and had to wear my hair under a hair net in the same style the court had which was a neck length page-boy. Wish I had pictures of that!


Dad was a Round Up director on the board of directors from the time I was tiny, until he became President of the Round Up when I was 10-12. Here he celebrates his 50th birthday as President…his nick name was Terje, short for our last name Terjeson…his Grandfather was called Torje in Norway.


Memories of Dad when he was President of the Round Up…I got to meet Michael Landon, Little Joe from Bonanza…and see the Clydesdale horses up close and personal when they came…but the ultimate was seeing  my Dad on his sorrel mare Gypsy in the arena running full blast chasing after the Queen and Court, riding hard and fast around the dirt track!


Mom and I were so proud of him! As you see I am still in the dorky stage of age…shortly after this I told Mom I would take care of my hair so I could grow it out…and I got a belt too!


The Presidents today continue the tradition, once the Queen and Court are introduced,


The court rides full blast around the arena waving…riding hard Let ‘er Buck style!


Then the President is introduced and he comes running out of one of the gates, chasing the Queen and Court around the arena track full-bore waving…


They all go out one of the gates…after two full laps of rodeo fun!


And the rodeo begins right away! It’s very cool to watch!


And lastly, memories of being a bored round-up kid…rodeo week was very long when you were a kid and you got tired of sitting all day everyday…often I would go over to the horse barn next to the rodeo stadium where our horses were, and get one out to groom, then hop on bareback and ride around the grounds. I loved spending time with my horses and I’m still horse crazy!


On Saturday of Round Up the jets do a fly over and oh boy is that cool…awesome and so very moving in your heart…I always get tears in my eyes as I am proud of the United States Military!


This picture is actually from the 100th year of Round Up when they formed a group of 100 flag bearers for the Westward Ho Parade…it made you dang proud of Pendleton and America!


The Round Up is the 5th season of the year around here, the directors and volunteers plan it all year long…the rodeo and all the celebrations last about a month…three weeks leading up to the rodeo and the actual rodeo the fourth week. As harvest winds down, you begin to feel the draw of the rodeo as memories come back to you…if you close your eyes, you can faintly hear the sounds of cowboys and livestock.


A time that is full of heritage and tradition…a time of honor and history…a time for old friends and families making new memories…its about life and good times filled with the memories of Round Up…the best rodeo there is in these parts…you won’t be disappointed!


It’s A Time To Let ‘er Buck!


Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad! Love you both…I’m holding down the fort and proud to be your girl!

God Bless The Red, White And Blue!

God Bless The Red, White And Blue…As we salute our veterans, we thank the brave men and women who fought for our country, our freedom and our security.

Many gave their lives for our life and for America, may God Bless each one of them and their families.

Growing up through out my school years, each morning of school the first thing we did was say “The Pledge Of Allegiance”, while placing our right hand over our heart.

Please join with me below in reciting together  “The Pledge Of Allegiance Of America.” Beside each of the verses is the meaning and definition of what it means.

“I pledge allegiance” (I promise to be true)

“to the flag” (to the symbol of our country)

“of the United States of America” (each state that has joined to make our country)

“and to the Republic” (a republic is a country where the people choose others to make laws for them — the government is “of, by and for” the people)

“for which it stands,” (the flag means the country)

“one nation” (a single country)

“under God,” (the people believe in a supreme being)

“indivisible,” (the country cannot be split into parts)

 “with Liberty and Justice” (with freedom and fairness)

“for all.” (for each person in the country…you and me!)

God Bless The Red, White and Blue!

God Bless The United States Of America!

Scenes Of The 2012 Pendleton Round Up From Hot Rod Cowgirl!

As I write this post, The 2012 Pendleton Round Up Is Officially Over Until Next September 2013. Pendleton, Cheyenne And Calgary Are Known As The Big Three Rodeos Among The Cowboys Who Favor Them…Some Cowboys Say That Pendleton Is Like Coming Home. Pendleton Has 102 Years Of Rodeo History, Heritage And Community Support. Hundreds Of Local Volunteers That Follow In The Footsteps Of Their Families Before Them…As Each Year They Put On One Outstanding Rodeo!

Come See For Yourself And Experience The Magic Of Pendleton…Seeing First Hand Why This Rodeo Is Filled With American Cowboy Heritage, Heart And Soul.

Did I Mention I Have A New Camera From Wild Bill For My Birthday? He Blessed Me With The Sony a77 And I Love It:)

My Cowboy Buddy…He Loves Horses And Cows And Someday He Will Have His Own Ranch…It Will Be Top Notch:)

Are You Guys Ready To Rock And Roll With The 102 Year Old Beat Of Pendleton?

Here Comes The Flag Bearers! God Bless America…God Bless The Cowgirls, The Cowboys And Their Horses!

One Of Our Four Beautiful Round Up Princesses…She Made The Run In Across The Arena…Jumping The Fence…Calmly Smiling And Waving To The Crowd…This Is A True Round Up Princess!

The Flag Bearers Are Awesome…I Love Seeing Our Flag Waving…On The Back Of A Horse…Perfecto!

Beautiful Princess Cowgirls And Beautiful Horses!

 Queen Alex Of The 2012 Pendleton Round Up…Making A Perfect Jump!

Here Comes The President Of The 102nd Pendleton Round Up!

Its Official The 2012 Round Up Has Begun!

History Is Being Made And Recorded In The Books! Look At Them Go!

Beautiful Teepees Filled With Native American Heritage…Hallmarks Of The Round Up!

The North Grandstand Is Ready To Boogie With What ONLY Pendleton Can Deliver!

Hang On Tight…Pendleton Gets It On With Action!

Cowboy Ponies Resting…Waiting For Their Events.

Contestants In The Warm Up Area…Giving Support With The “You Can Do It Attitude”…Which Is What We Do As We Honor” The Code Of The West.” If You Grew Up With It And Lived It…You Know What I Am Talking About.

 The Sports Medicine Van Stands By…As Well As Top Notch Equine and Animal Vets…They Are Ready To Help Any Injured Contestant, Volunteer Or Injured Horse Or Animal…Dr. Corey Has Been My Vet For 32 Years With My Horses…He Is Outstanding In His Field!

Bucking Horses Hanging Out Behind The Scenes…These Horses Are Loved And Well Taken Care Of…They Have Great Value And Are Raised By Their Owners To Buck And Perform.

Pendleton Has It All! And Bill Dawson Is Incredible With Repairing The Historic Wagons And Getting Them Ready For The Parades And Arena Presentations.

Horses Stand By Patiently…Taking A Rest In The Shade.

What I Love About The Round Up Is That I Get To See My Favorite People…And This Couple Is On The Top Ten Of My List:)

Hey Cowboy Dog…He Actually Told Me He Travels To Lots Of Rodeos And Loves It…But Pendelton Is His Favorite:)

Horses Discussing Their Owners And Their Ding Dong Events…LOL…And Waiting For Their Time To Shine!

Outside The West End Of The Round Up Stadium…You Find Another Part Of The Rodeo Back Here Behind The Scenes.

You See Cowboys Swinging Their Ropes…Loosening Up…Trying To Relax…And Cowgirls Relaxing Their Horses By Giving Them A Job To Do…With All The Commotion It Helps Both You And Your Horse To Have a Focus.

My Favorite Picture This Year Is This One:) I Like The Sepia Color And The Horses Seem To Be In Sync…I Love The Build Of “A True Classic Quarter Horse”…Put Together Rock Solid…I Love Muscled Quarter Horse Butts!

The Same Picture With Colors Is Ok Too:)

Pendleton Is Like No Other Wild West Rodeo…Full Of History…Full Of Tradition…Full Of Memories And Old Friends:)

Forever Families Who Have Lived Their Lives Here Settling The Land…Raising Their Families…Building Their Future With Hopes And Dreams…It Was Through The Story Of Their Lives…That The Pendleton Round Up Story Was Born 102 Years Ago.

And Is Still Going Strong Today…Filled With Historical Heritage And The True Western Spirit.

Happy Birthday Dad! He Was Born September 17, 1914…Four Years After The Round Up Began…He Grew Up In It And Played A Huge Roll In It…I Am Proud Of My Dad Forever And Always! He Taught Me Everything I Know About Horses And Cows!

One Of These Years WB And I Are Going To Play Tourist…Go To All The Parades, Dinners, Breakfasts, Main Street And Do The Entire Week Of Rodeo and Happy Canyon:) We Have Always Been In It Or Involved And Have Not Seen What The Tourist Sees…So Yee-Haw!

Minnie Cow-Kitty  Says Meow-Yahmoo! Isn’t She Cute…I Love Her Green Eyes, Her Markings and Her Long Whiskers!

Let ‘Er Buck!

This Was My Morning Sun Today…My Prayers Go Out To All Who Are In The Middle Of Fighting For Your Homes And Your Lands…Your Animals And Lives. I Pray That God Will Send Heaven’s Rain And Blessing You With His Glory…Putting Out ALL The Fires In The Western United States! God Bless You All!

The Pendleton Round Up 2012…Let ‘Er Buck! Hot Rod Cowgirl Is On The Move With Her Camera…Stay Tuned!

Of course you remember last year right?

Lots of horses…

An All American Rodeo…Not Just Any Rodeo But…The Pendleton Round Up!

Get Set…Get Ready…And Let ‘Er Buck! The 102 Year Old Rodeo Officially Started Today With Horses, Cowboys and Cowgirls!

Rough and Tough…Here Comes The Round Up Princesses!

The Pendleton Round Up Queen Follows…These Girls Know How To Ride Fast and Hard!

Bucking Chutes Waiting…

Pick Up Men Helping!

Friday Morning 2011 Westward Ho Parade With 101 American Flags!

Contestants Warming Up…For Their Chance Of Winning Pendleton!

Cowboy Horses…Patiently Standing…Taking A Break.

This Is Pendleton…its boogie time!

Turn and Burn Girl…Rock On and Go!

Traditions And Heritage…Wild Bill Taking The Oxen Through The Westward Ho Parade.

Me Riding My Horse Lottie Helping With The Oxen…Lottie Was 4 Years Old Here And Such A Good Girl!

My Dad On Gypsy…He Was President Of The Pendleton Round Up 1963-1964.

My Mom Attending A Round Up Function…She Is In The Middle Of The Group, In The White Suit.

The Budweiser Horses Came To Visit When Dad Was President….I Got To Meet Them All In Person:):):) They Were Incredible!

Little did I know that Wild Bill and I would move to Wyoming and mange a 110 mile ranch for three partners and one of the partners was Paul, who owned the Melody Ranch in Jackson Hole and whose Mother was a Busch…this picture shows me with the long red hair…to my right is Margo, a lovely lady and friend, to my left is Paul with his Mule “Honey Buns” who was really cool and that is my Wild Bill in the flat hat…actually back then it was a WY. hat…and behind us in the near distance was the incredible Wind Rivers!!!! That is the Continental Divide (not a very good picture of them so I will do a post one of these days on our time there with better photos)

Ok I had to slip one photo in so you could see what i saw every morning and every night and all day long:) The Wind Rivers were incredible and I got to wake up to it every day and watch lightning storms over it every night…I loved, loved, loved Wyoming:) It was the life I grew up in…the American West…horses, cows, mountains and weather, elements of Mother nature…and life…sweet cowgirl life:)

My Dad was asked to be Grand Marshal of The Westward Ho Parade a few years ago…and at the time the main horses we had were younger and Lottie was the oldest, so Dad asked me if he could ride her through the parade. I of course said yes and then I got to work…she had been in parades before but she was only 6 years old and I wanted to be sure that she remained calm with Dad. As soon as I could I got hold of the serape behind the saddle and every late spring and summer evening in Juniper Canyon, I had the serape tied behind my saddle and Lottie and I rode…no make that galloped up and down the hills out here with that serape flapping and rusting against her to get her completely broke to the sound of it and the feel of it.  I was worried as Lottie did not like men for some reason…and she would buck them off! Ask Wild Bill…and he is good horseman!

God heard my prayers and Lottie did not buck with Dad…he was the first man ever to ride my mare and not have an issue:) I was sooooo relieved!

This Week I Am Taking Pictures Once Again Of My Hometown Rodeo…Next Week I Will Post What I Shoot So Stay Tuned:) In The Mean Time Let ‘Er Buck!!!

My New Favorite Day!

Good Morning To My New Favorite Day!

Grab your coffee and read on:)

I recently had a chance to meet Shannon Pruitt, of My New Favorite Day…here is a link to her blog http://mynewfavoriteday.com/.

Shannon is an incredible wife, mom, daughter and friend….she brings good into life with a beautiful attitude and she is one awesome lady! She lives in CA. with her husband and their children. Here is Shannon’s introduction of herself from her blog.

“My name is Shannon Pruitt and I am a childhood surviving, divorced, now happily married, IVF success story, working mother of 2 amazing babies who were born 12 weeks premature. While my children are now 2 years old, my son, Q, has thrived while our daughter, E, has had a much more difficult journey.  She is considered special needs with a tentative diagnosis of Cerebral Palsy, and so as she grows, so do we as individuals and as family. How to help her, how to celebrate our differences while allowing ourselves to cope with the challenges that we never knew to expect.  So while much of this blog is based on our experiences (good and not-so-good), it is also based on how we must not let ourselves become victims of our circumstances but rather advocate in our own lives.”

“After being in a bit of a self-imposed emotional isolation for about 18 months, 6 months ago an ordinary moment in our living room became extra-ordinary and I thought perhaps sharing these stories of hope and inspiration can help and motivate others going through similar circumstances.  So that night, with my nerves on fire, I created my first post for ‘mynewfavoriteday,’ and what I found out from so many of you was that these emotions and feelings were not unique to us or our circumstances, but rather permeated all of your personal experiences through your relationships and situations with parents, conception, siblings, IVF, prematurity, parenting, children, special needs, terminal illness, and everyday stress.  It became very clear that we are all united by common emotions of love, fear, hope, faith, sadness, happiness, strength, and joy and most importantly, we are all doing the best we can, how we can.  We all need one another and if we can remember to find the little nuggets of inspiration and motivation we can try to make each day ‘ournewfavoriteday’.”

A very good friend of mine who lives in Central Oregon sent me a link to Shannon’s blog site last winter as she knew Shannon’s best ever friend who lived down the street from her. I clicked on the link and the friendship with Shannon began developing that night. She grew up in Ashland , Oregon and has been to my neck of the woods in Eastern Oregon…and has attended the Pendleton Round Up.

I felt a connection to Shannon immediately as we share a lot in common with life and an artists heart.

So today July 17th Shannon interviewed me on her blog and if you go to her web/blog site you can see the interview:)


I am humbled that she wanted to interview me…my life is truly just like yours with both good and bad times…we just keep a going and find something each day to be thankful for and grateful for…then we look for a really good belly laugh to get some of those feel good cells moving:)

And there you have a pearl of wisdom from Hot Rod Cowgirl…and Melody:)

Shannon calls her blog “My New Favorite Day”, as it is her choice each day to find something amazing in her life that day and that one day becomes her new favorite day!

What an awesome way to look at each day as we roll out of bed…no matter if we have something fun to wake to or something hard to wake to, each day “CAN” be our new favorite day if we want it to…

We just have to make that one choice and decision…

At times with serious determination…we can choose to be upset or we can smile even when life seems to hit us hard…there is always a way to find hope…the choice is ours…

To either let it ruin your day or your life or choose instead to carry on and find a way to survive it with grace and a can do attitude with heart.

We can survive the whatever it is with the belief that things will get better and life will go on…and we can survive with strength and joy.

Hot Rod Cowgirl and her dogs choose to find a good belly laugh each day:)

Along with my horses…

And Minnie too:)

And my hubby Wild Bill:)

Be sure to check out My New Favorite Day at http://mynewfavoriteday.com

Ok this 4:00 am stuff is not bad usually but I have been up for 24 hours…I gotta go take a nap…yawn…we have had terrible lightning storms nightly and various other things like wind, hail, more thunder and last night was four hours solid of every kind of lightning there is over the top of our house from 10:00 pm-2:30 am…kind of scary when you think about it.

We have an abundance of dry fuel with dried out cheat grass and mustard…the right combination for a raging fire…and an 80 plus bushel wheat crop waiting to be harvested…which was postponed again due to heavy rain and flooding last night…pins and needles for the farmers around us as well as for us too.

Our small town is under water tonight…this was early yesterday morning…once the water recedes then the clean up of mud begins…it has been a long week here…and harvest is on hold. This is a place where we have a choice of giving into the negative or we can choose to have a brand new day become our favorite day…I am gonna choose a brand new day:) How bout you?

Behind The Scenes Of Pendleton…Let ‘Er Buck 2011

Behind the scenes of Pendleton…Let ‘er Buck 2011…I decided this year I would go behind the scenes with my camera…this is where you see the real life of the contestants….the people….the livestock…the all “American Cowboy Life”. I love it as it is the real deal…truth in pictures…I hope you enjoy the photos that I captured…I have a few in the arena too but will do one more post for them as my posts seem to get long quickly.

Horses behind the grandstand…sleeping…hanging out…waiting.

Cowboy parking behind the grandstands…I would not want to pull in with our trailer and try to park…no way.

Round Up Indian Village.

Cowboys warming up…talking with friends and trying to relax.

Cowboy town…trucks, trailers, horses…I love the heart beat of the western life of the cowboy and cowgirl.

Cowboy ponies and wild ponies…does not matter as all are the same in the horse world…some are trained and others are not but they are horses… they all have huge hearts and want to get along.

Sports Medicine Van standing by…hoping to not be needed!

I love watching the horses the most…they have their own language and it is all body language…I am trying to learn all of this right now….have been a student of horses since I was 2 years old…and a serious natural horsemanship student for 10 years of learning about the horse and I am still learning…will be learning forever I am sure…as you can never know it all and anyone who says they know it all does not know much.

Warming up…and some are cooling down.

Actually laying down and cooling off…feels so good to roll.

And feels so good on my itchy back!

Ok guys lets go…hope you all feel better now that you rolled, itched and cooled off a bit:)

Back to warming up…cowboy style.

Moving with the rhythm of Round Up.

Hoping to win their round…old friends and new friends…cowboys doing the rodeo circuit.

“And I was so dang close to winning…and then lost by 1.1 second…or less…my wife and the kids are good…my horse is doing fantastic…I hope I win…can use the money to pay expenses…no hard feelings right.”

“We need to get together after the craziness of competing and have a bq with our families.”

“Whatever guys….geez…I am trying to get my head on for the final barrel race run of the day…here at Pendleton for crying out loud…and you are trying to bond…geez…ok focus…focus…focus…get my head on right cowgirl style!”

Thinking…praying…sitting…trying to relax…breathing cowgirl style.

Moving and riding with purpose to prepare…some are riding with purpose to relax.

Horses getting tired of standing and being after a long week in Pendleton with the hot weather…the crowds…noises…cowboys…and just rodeo…on one hand I  love it…on another I can see where it would get old.

Cranky and wanting to go home to quiet again.

“Keeping my focus…no matter what!”

“Noise and distraction will not detract me and my horse.”

“So who do you think will win the “All Around?”

“I am going to win….focus.”

I think it is time for a nap or maybe…

Cleaning up the hay…the back horse has both a different color and interesting marks.

Thirsty ponies…taking turns.

The rodeo goes on but is getting closer to being done for these horses.

On the slant…waiting for the go.

What…who..are you? Smile boys:)

Ready to rest.

Under the grandstands 2011…hope you enjoyed life behind the Round Up!

Behind The Scenes Of Pendelton…Let ‘Er Buck 2011!!!

The Grand Entry Run In…Cowgirls and Cowboys…Welcome To Pendleton and The Wild West!

Welcome to Pendleton and the Wild West!. I am glad that you are back…we will continue our story of the honored traditions of the Pendleton Round Up. A rodeo week filled with people, events, rodeo, parades, pageants and history. Pendleton and the surrounding small towns were founded on heritage…families that have been here for over a hundred years…my Norwegian family has been here since the 1890’s. Cowboys, Indians, farmers, horses, cattle, sheep, wheat, wool…in Umatilla County we are what one would call a rather independent people…most of us have seen both good and hard times in life..we are rough and tough..we stand with our fellow-man here and we volunteer each year for the Pendleton Round Up…this rodeo is part of who we were yesterday and who we are today.

Once the parade is over…

2010 Dress Up Parade

 Happy Canyon Indian Princess’s in 2010 Dress Up Parade.

Indian Princess’s in the 1948 parade.

You hustle down to the rodeo grounds to grab your seats…eat lunch…shop a bit with all the vendors…run into people you have not seen forever.

This is what Pendleton is all about one historic week a year…old friends and good times!

Before we get started with the rodeo though I want to take you on a history lesson to show you how much the Round Up has grown over 101 years.

This photo shows the new stadium remodel that was finished in time for last year’s 100th Rodeo Anniversary in 2010. The old West End Grandstand was demolished and was rebuilt with a cover.

This is the South Grandstand today.

This was the South Grandstand in the early years.

I am not sure what year this was but you can see that a much larger stadium was built before it was coverd….Pendleton was much smaller too.

This is the new West End that was built and covered and the North Grandstand where the bucking shoots are…the track and infield of grass.

Grand Entry Serpentine with 100 riders with 100 flags for the 100th Anniversary of The Pendleton Round Up Rodeo in 2010.

Grand Entry Serpentine  1912.

Pendleton has progressed into a town of about 16,000 residents and the Round Up has grown with it each year into one of the top three rodeos in the US. Enough on the history for now…lets imagine we are sitting in our seats waiting for the rodeo to begin.

You can feel the excitement as we wait for the cannon to go off…the flags to come out for the national anthem followed by the Queen and Court…and the rodeo officially begins!

Boom….the cannon went off and the flags came out….first from the West Gate.

Then from the East Gate comes another flag.

First Round Up Princess comes in on a run jumping the fence from the East Gate.

Another Princess runs in from the West Gate.

The court comes to a stop in front of the South Grandstand…luckily I was sitting in the South Grandstand where this lovely Princess came to a stop.  These gals know how to ride their horses and they ride hard….giving it their all to come into the arena on a full gallop…jumping the fence…coming across the grass….jumping another fence….coming to a sliding stop in front of the South Grandstand…with beautiful smiles and waving to the rodeo crowd!

Queen Mackenzie making her run in across the grass.

The next photos sequence I will show you is the Queen and her Court…Riding Cowgirl Tough…Pendleton Style!

The Queen leads off and boy does she go Round Up fast!

Riding hard for Pendleton…you go girl!

Riding after the Queen are her four Round Up Princess’s.

This is why they are selected..these young ladies are “True Grit!”

It is exciting to see the court each day ride in like this…makes me proud…this is Pendleton…this is the Round Up!

The track has corners with slope so it takes true horsemanship to ride hard and make those corners.

Next comes the President of the Round Up…chasing the court around the track and out the gate.

She is flying…fast and furious…cowgirl style!

There goes the flag carriers chasing the court and the president.

The United States of America Rocks!

Cool saddle blankets girls!

Red, White And Blue!

Ready…Set…Go…Ride Them Broncs Pendleton Style!

Let ‘Er Buck!

Ride ‘Em Cowboy!

Pick up men headed to do their job for the cowboys of Pendleton.

With that I will leave you until the next post…an epic rodeo takes time to tell…at least we got the rodeo started…next time “Hang On”…lots more to share.

Day Three Of The Pendleton Round Up 2011

Day three of the Pendleton Round Up 2011…I can not tell you in one post what “The Pendleton Round Up” is like to experience so I will do several posts over the next few days.

I took my camera and shot over 262 pictures so that I can share with you what the rodeo is like…hang on tight…there is only one Pendleton Round Up!

Once the heat of August comes to an end and harvest is over for the year…it is time to celebrate…time to catch up with your neighbors and friends…time to celebrate harvest and our blessings…time for a rodeo…send the word out to all the small communities around Pendleton that we will whoop it up cowboy style!

That is how the Round Up came to be in 1910…a celebration that harvest was over…lets invite our neighbors…neighboring communities and the Indians to come celebrate with us as a community…have a little rodeo and good food…with lots of fun!

I quote “In the fall of 1910, a group of ranchers and cowboys decided to celebrate the harvest and show off their skills. All the town’s stores closed, and the largest crowd in Pendleton’s history then showed up to enjoy the first Pendleton “Round-Up,” a rip-roaring Western rodeo. The Round-Up has since become a week-long celebration of the cowboy way of life. Fueled by the unbridled energy of hundreds of volunteers, the Round-Up is a true case of how community pride and spirit can be funneled into an outstanding international event.”

No matter how tired at times I get of Round Up…I will forever go to it…I am drawn to it like a moth is to a flame.

It is part of who I am…the people…the crowds…the smells and sounds…the horses and livestock…the memories.

Round Up is in the air…you can feel it and see it.

The rodeo is a large part of Round Up week…the yearly history though of each rodeo is more about the people…the cowboys and the cowgirls…the volunteers and the out of towners…and the events of that one historic week become a part of the fabric of our lives here.

We come together to be part of Round Up…such as “The Westward Ho Parade” on Friday morning of Round Up. Yes that is the back of my head, I am in the middle with the hair clip shooting pictures for you:)

This is the beginning of the 2011 parade…what you see is 101 American Flags being carried on horseback. Last year the Round Up volunteers carried 100 flags as the rodeo celebrated it’s 100 Year Anniversary.

This picture was taken a 100 years ago of the Westward Ho parade in 1911.

The Round Up is rich with History and Heritage…Cowboys and Indians…a Rodeo with Tradition and American dignity.

I wish you could see it in person with me…it is incredible to see the entire parade.

There is Melody…my horse…she is with my friend carrying a flag…it was Mel’s first parade ever.

She did good…I am so proud of her…thank you Lana:)

This is the “Round Up Spirit”…”Ordinary People” who volunteer to give their time freely to support “The Round Up” each year…it is part of their life…their traditions…their celebration!

The “Westward Ho Parade” is non motorized…it is all people and livestock…I love seeing the costumes…the wagons…the horses…the people…the “Wild West” comes to life in this parade.

“The Round Up Mounted Band 2011.”

“The Round Up Mounted Band 1910.”

I am not sure who these guys were but I loved their horses…colors…silver tack…flags.

The “Round Up Oxen”…”Wild Bill” used to do this…it may look like they have control of the “Oxen”…but really the “Oxen have control!”

I love her chaps!

This was fun to see…the US Forestry Department with their pack mules.

Their pack mules were very well-trained to do this. Parades are great but for the animal…horses or mules…parades can be very intimidating with the noises and people lurching out into the street to take pictures of them etc.

For a horse or mule to get through a parade in good form they need to trust their human…as in ok this is scary but I can trust you to keep me safe so I will be ok…they submitt to us in a humble way…we owe it back to them to keep them safe.

Miniature horses pulling a miniature wagon.

Miss Rodeo Oregon.

Happy Canyon directors who put on the night pageant each night after the rodeo…be sure and go as Happy Canyon is the story of the “Wild West” and how it was settled…the story is told with live actors and animals…it is worth going to.

Round Up directors who direct the epic rodeo and all that goes into a rodeo that is 101 years old.

Oregon Mounted Patrol.

The “Westward Ho” parade is long but well worth you time to see…it is a historic parade as many of the wagons are restored…the costumes are a traditional heritage…often passed on in a family…being worn every year for Round Up.

The history of Pendleton..the area was founded by pioneers who came to this land to settle it and grow crops to support themselves…my Dad grew up sewing sacks of grain for his Dad…he remembered hauling the wheat in sacks by wagon like this to the elevator.

Once the parade is over you head down to the rodeo grounds to get your seat in time to see the start of the rodeo with the Queen and Court grand entry. My next blog will be about the rodeo…stay tuned!

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