Rocky Mountain Horse Expo Cowboy Trails reminiscent of the old west
After a long day roping and riding, cowboys sit around the campfire, telling tales of the past and eating handmade grub. For attendees of the Rocky Mountain Horse Expo, this was something they could experience first hand, at the first Cowboy Trails event held on Saturday, March 10.
The night kicked off with the color guard presented by the U.S. Marshalls, Denver and Douglas County Sheriff’s posse mounted patrols. The National Anthem was sung, and then the Colorado Regulators gave a mounted shooting demonstration.
Over 300 people attended the event, where they could participate in simulated bull riding, roping, live music, story telling, a camp cookout and square dancing.
The event was created to give those who attended the RMHE a true experience of the West. “We weren’t lacking a western horse experience, but we wanted people who enjoy the western lifestyle to have an event as well. We wanted an event where people could kick back and do some things that they can’t do other places,” said Bill Scebbi, executive director for the Colorado Horse Council.
He continued, “We wanted to offer something that was different from other places. We looked at our total program, and thought the western experience was potentially missing. People are used to having that experience, and we wanted them to have that. In the past we have had ranch rodeos and different types of competitions, but we wanted to have something more interactive.”
The live music was provided by Jon Chandler. Chandler’s music reflects the spirit of the West, and the heritage that comes from it. A seventh generation Coloradoan, Chandler produces true Western music.
Red Tail, the mountain man, and his burro Bambino helped recreate stories of the old West. Square dancing was provided by the Scuffed Shoes and Scootbacks square dance team. Patty Ruwoldt provided history on campfire cooking and samples, and Pat Hall gave big loop roping demonstrations.
“I think the music, the story telling, the idea of bringing horses around people while they were at the expo really worked. They have had a whole day of looking at clinicians and that type of people, and they wanted something they could watch and be interactive with. We provided that with Cowboy Trails,” said Scebbi.
The event was very family oriented, and a large number of children attended the event. “We were surprised with how many children there were. It was great. We wanted to be certain that it was things that people truly wanted to sit and listen to and taste. It was at a good time of day, and it wasn’t long and lengthy. Those who attended were able to interact with people who appreciate the cowboy lifestyle,” Scebbi said.
Scebbi was one of the main creators of the event, and was pleased with the reception the event received. “I am a real Disney type of person, and that is the one thing that Disney rides do. They engage people. We wanted people to be engaged, and Cowboy Trails did just that. People could sit down and listen to the storytellers about what happened on the trail, and become involved in Jon Chandler’s music. The shooting was very engaging as well,” he said.
The event was so successful that Scebbi plans on holding it again next year, and will be expanding on it. “We are planning on doing more reenactment next year. I think that fantasy and mystery about the old West is missing that people can experience. I think our cowboy experience gives us a friendly, fun family time,” Scebbi said.
He added, “People told me how much they enjoyed this new event. It was fresh and creative, and has a lot of potential for the future. It will definitely be an event that we keep and expand on.”
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