Mayor Philip Craighead and Lone Star Rodeo are putting the finishing touches on the 4th Annual Charity Whip Crackin' Rodeo and Outdoor Show. The two-day event is scheduled for Friday and Saturday at the James E. Ward Ag Center in Lebanon.
A Special Events Rodeo for exceptional children kicks off the rodeo events Friday from 9 a.m. until noon. The rodeo offers fun for the entire family, and proceeds benefit several local charities.
This year, the rodeo will also feature an outdoor show. The rodeo begins each night at 7 p.m. The outdoor show hours are Friday from 2-9 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m.
The action-filled championship rodeo features the thrills and spills of bareback bronc riding, saddle bronc riding, calf roping, cowgirl’s breakaway roping, steer wrestling, team roping, cowgirl’s barrel racing and Brahma bull riding.
The event will also feature a "gold rush" for the younger set where children look for prizes in a pile of hay. There will also be a "best dressed cowboy and cowgirl contest" for children age 10 and under.
There will be chuck wagon races throughout the evening, with wagons speeding around tight corners. Controlled chaos ensues – wheels have been broken and drivers have been thrown from the wagons, along with some rollovers.
"This is not your grandma’s saddle club gathering," Craighead said. "This is the real wild West."
Also on hand will be Team Karson with Frontier Town from Ocean City, Md., performing the colorful and exciting “Liberty Stand,” the most dangerous stunt in trick riding. Crowd pleaser Mike Wentworth the rodeo clown will also entertain.
This is the first year the rodeo will have an outdoor show, featuring campers, boats, tractors, mowers, ATVs, pools, spas, landscaping and more for those who long for the great outdoors.
The event is a good time but, more importantly, it helps a lot of good causes. Last year’s rodeo raised more than $40,000 for Lebanon’s local charities.
Craighead said the city needs to get ready "because company is coming to town." Last year, the rodeo attracted more than 250 participants from over six states.
"For a family experience your kids will talk about for weeks, this is the place to be," he said.
Rodeo tickets are for sale at the Lebanon-Wilson County Chamber of Commerce office on the square, Wilson Bank & Trush, Rose Tire, Bates Ford, City Hall and online at whipcrackinrodeo.com.
"Your purchase will make a difference in our community," Craighead said.
Pre-sale tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for children. Tickets can also be purchased the gate the day of the rodeo at $15 for adults and $10 for children. Children age 4 and under get in free.
"Come join us, have a great time with your family and help those who help so many of those in need," Craighead said.