New to Ramona Rodeo this year is the Challenged Children’s Rodeo, which gives special needs children the opportunity to experience rodeo life. It will be in the rodeo arena from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Sunday, May 31.
“They team up with a PRCA (Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association) cowboy or cowgirl and a rodeo royalty, and they escort them personally to all the different stations,” said Jeanne Pyeatt, rodeo committee member coordinating the activity.
A nonprofit organization headquartered in Norco, Calif., Challenged Children’s Rodeo offers stick horse racing, simulated bucking, dummy roping, mock steer wrestling and other activities for the youngsters.
“They bring everything in and set it up,” said Pyeatt. “They have a grand entry, they bring the children in, they line them up, and the pair them up with a cowboy or cowgirl who takes them around.”
The young participants have pictures taken with rodeo clowns, they receive rodeo accessories to wear, and, at the conclusion of their rodeo, they each are awarded a championship gold medallion.
The children participating in the rodeo will be from Ramona and backcountry communities.
When one of Pyeatt’s daughters, Rachelle, was Norco Rodeo Queen, the family attended a Challenged Children’s Rodeo.
“They put on a Challenged Children’s Rodeo at the California Circuit Finals and we thought it would be a great idea to bring that program to Ramona,” said Pyeatt.
The rodeo gates will open early on May 31, and people planning to attend the Sunday afternoon PRCA rodeo show are invited to watch the Challenged Children’s event.