NPRA Finals start tonight in Prineville
- Lon Austin
- Central Oregonian - Features
Top amateur cowboys and cowgirls in the Northwest are expected to compete at two-day event
Many of the top up-and-coming cowboys and cowgirls in the Northwest will converge on Prineville this weekend for the Northwest Professional Rodeo Association Finals.
The event, which will be held at the Crook County Fairgrounds for the second consecutive year, is the top amateur rodeo in the region.
Central Oregon contestants should figure prominently in this year’s finals.
Terrebonne’s Charlie Barker and Shane Erickson are locked in a close battle for the men’s all-around championship. Barker has 668 points while Erickson is three points behind with 665 points.
Barker is also currently leading the saddle bronc competition and is fourth in steer wrestling.
Meanwhile, Erickson is leading the wild cow milking, and tie down roping and is in fifth place in team roping.
Crook County cowboys that still have a chance to win event championships include Mark Gage, who is currently second in saddle bronc riding, Colt Conley (fifth, bull riding), Christian Radabaugh (eighth, steer wrestling), Kade McLean (eighth, saddle bronc), and Leslie Penhollow (ninth, barrel racing).
Other Central Oregon cowboys to watch for include bareback riders Wyatt Bloom, David Peebles, and Donavan Orr.
Bloom is in first place with Peebles in eighth and Orr in 10th. All three cowboys competed for the Tri-County High School Rodeo Club last season.
Competition begins both Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m., with an after party and awards presentation scheduled for 9 p.m., Saturday, at Carey Foster Hall.
Tickets are available in advance at the Prineville-Crook County Chamber of Commerce, the Crook County Fairgrounds, Prineville Men’s Wear, Round Butte Seed, Redmond Big R, and Bend Boot Barn. Tickets will also be available at the gate. Gates open nightly at 6 p.m., with performances scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.
Ticket Prices: Adults $10 nightly. Children 6-11, $5. Children 5 and under free.
Saturday is military appreciation night with current and former military members admitted for $5.