2009 Woodchoppers Jamboree and Rodeo coming June 20-21
The 49th Annual Woodchoppers Jamboree is scheduled in Encampment, Wyo., on Saturday, June 20 and Sunday, June 21, 2009 at the Lions Club Arena as they celebrate the valley’s timber and tie-cutting heritage. In addition, at 1:30 p.m. each day, rodeo action will recognize the ranching influence in the valley. A parade will start the festivities at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday morning and a melodrama warning visitors to “Keep an Eye on Your Wallets in Encampment” will provide even more entertainment at 7:00 p.m. both Friday and Saturday evenings.
Cady Cox will reign as the 2009 Jamboree Queen. Cady attends Encampment High School. Mandy Harris was selected as Lady-in-Waiting and is a Saratoga High School student. Long time residents, Charlotte Kraft and Betty Merrill will serve as the 2009 Grand Marshalls for the Parade.
The melodrama, “Money in the Bank or It’s all Your Vault” by M.K. O’Roark will kick off the weekend on Friday night, June 19, at 7 p.m. The show is produced by special arrangement with Melodrama Mike’s Play Service, Wichita, Kan., in conjunction with the Encampment Riverside Woodchopper’s Jamboree. The comedy, presented by the Grand Encampment Opera Company at the historic “Encampment Opera House,” also the Town Hall building, is under the direction of Mary Martin.
There will be a second performance at 7 p.m. on Saturday evening, June 20. Admission is by donations at the door.
The parade on Saturday morning will follow the traditional route, but the past few years the direction has been reversed and now starts in Encampment and proceeds through Riverside. (The route was changed to make it easier for walking participants and antique vehicles since it is downhill.)
No advance registration is required, but participants should meet at the Old Opera House (City Hall) at 8:30 a.m. for float judging. Encampment High School FFA members will use the Plasma Cam to create trophies for float winners and provide a variety of designs for the various divisions.
Woodchopper events will start, at 10 a.m. Saturday morning after the parade and at 9 a.m. on Sunday. Men and women will compete in the various Woodchopping and Woodcutting events while putting on quite a show for spectators.
The Rocky Mountain Championship Lumberjack Trophy will be awarded to the lumberjack compiling the most points during the two day contest. A prize will also be given for the all-around woman. The all-around points winner is based on a two-day average with cash prizes for First, Second and Third place on all point events. There is over $2,000 added purse for Woodchopping Events.
Although the overall weekend activities are sponsored by the Encampment-Riverside Lions Club, additional sponsors for the Woodchopper Events include the Town of Encampment, Mangy Moose Saloon, Shively’s North, Coors Beer, West Range Reclamation, Wyoming Diesel, L & T Consulting, Rocky Mountain Casing, and Lazy Acres Campground.
Woodchopping Point Events include Tree Felling, Handsawing Competitions for both men and women, Medium Class Modified Chainsaw, Power Saw Log Bucking – 2nd Class – Small 65cc Saws, Choker Setting, Axe Chopping, Axe Throwing, and Pole Throwing. Non-Point Events include the Mad Loggers Chainsaw Throw and “Open Class-Anything Goes” Power Saw Log Bucking.
The entry fee is $10 per person for each event per day. For more information about woodchopper events, please contact Ron Harvey at WoodChoppersJamboree@yahoo.com or (970) 210-2955.
A popular activity offered for younger children during the Woodchoppers’ action is a treasure hunt for coins planted in a sawdust pit. Older youth look forward to trying their skill at climbing a greased pole to reach money tacked to the top. The crowd enjoys watching the cooperation between contestants as they struggle up the pole for the prize.
The Encampment-Riverside Lions will serve their traditional barbecue lunch for a additional charge each day, starting at 11:30 a.m. Hamburgers and hot dogs will also be available.
Beverages will be on sale throughout each day. (No coolers will be allowed on the grounds.)
The Wyoming Rodeo Association (WRA) sanctioned rodeo action will begin at 1:30 p.m. both days. Rodeo winners will be awarded money prizes with $400 added purse for each event.
Rodeo events include Saddle and Bareback Bronc Riding, Steer Wrestling, Bull Riding, Men’s Calf Roping, Barrel Racing, Ladies’ Breakaway Roping, and Team Roping for both men and women.
Each event has a separate sponsor, including Silver Spur Ranch, Ready Oil Field Services, Big Creek Ranches, Bill Irvine, Trail Run Ranches, Chez Booze, Bear Trap Cafe, Bar & Cabins, Rawlins National Bank, and Burns Insurance. Additional sponsors are Budweiser Beer, L & T Consulting and Rocky Mountain Casing.
To enter, both local and WRA members should call (719) 486-0599 on June 15, between 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. Rodeo contestants must furnish their own equipment. The stock contractor is Jerry Berentis Rodeo Company from Fruita, Colo.
For more information about the Rodeo events, please call Jerry Kraft at (307) 327-5374.
Admission to the Lions Club Grounds will be $7 per person each day which covers both the woodchopping and rodeo action. Children under 12 are free.
The Encampment-Riverside Lions Club sponsors the Jamboree activities. Proceeds will be used for Civic Projects. The Lions Club also provides eye glasses for needy children and sponsors a scholarship for an Encampment High School graduate. These businessmen and ranchers work for the entire year to make the Jamboree a successful and fun-filled time.
While visitors are in Encampment, they should also plan to make a stop at the Grand Encampment Museum to explore the restored structures that form a pioneer town. Many other exhibits in the Doc Culleton Interpretive Center reveal fascinating facts about the mining, ranching, and lumbering history of the area.
The Museum is open from Memorial Day to Labor Day, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Donations are accepted. For more information, please contact the museum at (307) 327-5308.
For a full slate of entertainment and competition, come and watch the whirlwind of action at the 2009 Woodchoppers Jamboree and Rodeo in Encampment, Wyo., during Father’s Day weekend, June 20 and 21, and make a stop at the Encampment Museum.
For more Jamboree information please call Saratoga/Platte Valley Chamber of Commerce at (307) 326-8855.
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