I'm not ashamed to say that this was in fact my first rodeo.
Some of these folks looked right at home.
We grabbed a seat in one of the stands.
This guy announced the different events and riders.
Every rodeo has a clown and apparently JJ Harrison is one of the best.
Get ready for some rodeo.
Each one of these guys burst out of the gate in the blink of an eye.
It didn't look like a particularly comfy way to ride a horse.
Saddle or no saddle I would not want to ride that horse.
I think that's some genuine cowboy snot shooting out of his nose.
I'm not sure why these guys even bother with their hats.
Tie Down Roping
Once the gates open, the rider's goal is to catch the calf by lassoing it around its neck, dismount from the horse, run to the calf, and restrain it by tying three legs together, in as short a time as possible.
Some of the best accomplish this in 10 seconds or less.
Like many rodeo events, there are concerns from the animal rights community that the competition may include practices that constitute cruelty to animals.
The event also carries a high risk of injury to the cowboy.
Whatever one's opinion may be, the Man vs. Beast spectacle was an impressive sight to behold.
Saddle Bronc Riding
This guy was as crazy and pumped up as his horse.
If he didn't get the best time, he at least made up for it in showmanship.
Off you go.
We were treated to a lovely, and somewhat comical, performance by the Pendleton Mounted Band.
Some of these Rodeo Queens were better than others at riding one-handed at full gallop while casually waving to the crowd with the other.
I think the 2013 Spray Rodeo Queen had eyes for me!
Breakaway roping is a variation of calf roping where a calf is roped, but not thrown and tied.
Before I understood the objectives of breakaway roping, I assumed calves like these simply got away.
But there were still plenty who failed to even rope a calf...
Wild Cow Milking
We watched several failed attempts to rope and milk a wild cow until this guy and his partner did it.
What comes next is pretty painful.
... all that for a drop of milk.