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Nancy Sheppard is grand marshal of the 125th Annual World’s Oldest Continuous Rodeo Parade, to be held at 9 a.m., Saturday, Aug. 15, starting at Green Valley Park and going east on Historic Old Main Street to Sawmill Crossing. Sheppard is a world famous trick rider and roper. She started her trick riding and roping in 1938 at age 9; at age 17, she performed in New York’s Madison Square Garden; she was inducted into the Cowgirl Hall of Fame in 1991, the Cowboy Hall of Fame in 1996, and the Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame in 2003. In addition to wowing rodeo fans for years, Nancy performed for Georgio Armani in Milan, Italy. This beautiful black-haired lady has represented rodeo in many ways over the years.

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Celebrating 125 years of rodeo in Rim Country

In the 1800s Payson was mostly a flat, grassy spot where cowboys could gather up their scattered, near-wild herds during the fall roundups, and prepare to drive them down to Phoenix or to the railroad line in Winslow. Naturally enough, the cowboys spent a lot of time boasting and then staging impromptu contests to both establish bragging rights and win enough money to have a good time during their time off. So began the August Doin’s ... 125 years later we celebrate the World’s Oldest Continuous Rodeo.

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