Spring Rodeo Parade Is A "Main Event"

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Old Main in Payson will ring with fun and the sound of a herd of horse hooves this weekend when the annual Spring Rodeo Gary Hardt Memorial Parade runs its course.

This is the fifth consecutive year the Payson ProRodeo Committee has presented its "Main Event" parade on Main Street.

The parade starts at 9 a.m. and features Judge Ronnie McDaniel as its grand marshal.

McDaniel has served Gila County for many years, working with the Gila County Sheriff's Office and as a member of the Payson Unified School District Board of Governors before becoming Justice of the Peace for the Payson region of the Justice Court system and municipal judge for the town of Payson.

"The town of Payson and the rodeo committee are honored to have Judge McDaniel represent our rich rodeo heritage here in the Rim country and recognize his outstanding service," said Dennis Fendler, who is chairing the parade for the Payson ProRodeo Committee.

Fendler said the parade will include plenty of horses, cheerleaders, walking and marching groups of all ages, classic vehicles and the beautiful ambassadors of the sport, the rodeo royalty.

Queens from around the Copper State and its neighbors will ride down Main Street with their glittering costumes outshined only by their million-dollar smiles, Fendler said.

Miss Rodeo Arizona Heather Freeman and Miss Turquoise Circuit Katie Hill will be on hand not only for the parade, but will also share the duty of representing Payson in the grand entries at the 7 p.m. rodeo performances Friday and Saturday, May 21 and 22, at the Payson Event Center.

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