Welcome Back To The Old West

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Welcome to Payson and the wonderful Rim Country. And welcome back to the Old West and the World's Oldest Continuous Rodeo.

August 14-17 the Old West will come alive at what some call the "August Doin's" at the Payson Event Center.

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Beautiful girls with bright smiles, flags flying and flashy western wear will open each rodeo performance as they lead the grand entry into the arena at the Payson Event Center.

Kick off the festivities early on the evening of Thursday, Aug. 14 when a special charity barrel race will be held for the Payson Food Bank. See beauty and power in motion as women barrel racers show their skills and talents, along with those of their horses. Admission is a can of food, and all of the donations will go to help stock the shelves of the food banks in Payson and Pine.

The barrel race, like the main events of the Rodeo, will be at the Payson Event Center on the west side of Highway 87, on the south side of town (across from the Mazatzal Hotel and Casino). Gates open at 5 p.m., Thursday, Aug. 16 and the contest starts at 6 p.m.

Performances of the Payson Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association Rodeo are at 7 p.m., Friday, Aug. 15 and Saturday, Aug. 16, gates open at 5 p.m.; and at 1 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 16 and Sunday, Aug. 17, gates open at 11 a.m.

The annual Rodeo Parade starts at 9 a.m., Saturday, Aug. 16 and runs from Green Valley Park, east on Main Street to the Sawmill Crossing shopping center. This is a new route for the parade, which for many years has been held on the Beeline Highway.

The Rodeo and Parade are not the community's only offerings this weekend. There will be a variety of special events at different restaurants and waterin' holes throughout the weekend -- lots of live music, dances, special menus and other entertainment. Details can be found throughout the pages of this special edition of the Payson Roundup's Rim Review.

The Rim Country Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Payson Pro Rodeo Committee present the Payson Rodeo. Stock contractor Honeycutt Rodeo Company brings the actual rodeo shows to the community.

Admission to the regular performances is $14 for adults, $12 for senior citizens, $7 for children 5 to 12, and free for those under 5. The opening performance at 7 p.m., Friday, Aug. 15 will be the "Tough Enough to Wear Pink" benefit show. Funds will be donated for breast cancer research for every contestant and audience member wearing pink. The Payson Regional Medical Center Healthy Woman program will have a booth at the rodeo grounds selling "pink" items as an additional benefit for breast cancer research and more.

A number of admission specials are being offered this year. Tickets for the 1 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 16 performance are two-for-one: buy one regular admission and get the second free. Plus the first 500 paid tickets will be accompanied by a free Coke drink "cozy" (aka a sleeve to contain the can sweat in humid conditions and help keep the drink cool).

The performance at 1 p.m., Sunday, Aug. 17 will be free for children under 12, if accompanied by a paying adult. There will also be a drawing for a 110cc child's all-terrain vehicle, compliments of Swire Coca Cola (the winner must be present).

For additional details, contact the chamber at (928) 474-4515.

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