By: Haylie Smart | Category: In Our Communities | Issue: March 2023
The 2022 Claremore Roping Champions Buddy Hawkins and Andrew Ward.
A favorite Claremore tradition returns this Memorial weekend with the return of the 77th Will Rogers Stampede PRCA Rodeo at Stampede Park. And Visit Claremore Executive Director Tanya Andrews is pleased to let everyone know with the Rodeo Arena Cooperative, comprised of the City of Claremore and the Board of County Commissioners, have worked diligently to make improvements to Stampede Park.
A new hospitality pavilion was completed in October, which can also serve as a gathering place for special events. Currently, new women's restrooms and a concession stand are being built; this was made possible by a private donor and the Rodeo Arena Cooperative.
Rodeo guests will also be happy to know they’ve updated the parking lot and a free shuttle service to the rodeo from two locations is being discussed. Once confirmed, the locations will be Claremore High School and Will Rogers Downs.
Last year was the first year that Claremore’s rodeo moved up to the medium sized category with the PRCA. Before that, Claremore had won Best Small Rodeo in America six times by the PRCA. But Andrews said the city is glad for their growth. “We were nominated for best medium size rodeo this year, and we came in second place to Black Hills Roundup in Belle Fourche, South Dakota. But it’s such an honor to be nominated.”
The Claremore rodeo continues to break records with over 820 contestants on the roster last year, which was a jump from 640 the year before.
Historically, the Steer Roping Contest has been held on Thursday night of the rodeo season, but the city is moving it to Saturday morning this year so that people working the rodeo, and guests from out of town, may have an opportunity to head down to the Lilac District and enjoy Boots on the Boulevard (Food Truck Thursday). In addition to the concession stands, there will be other vendors at the rodeo selling western boutique items, shaved ice, kettle corn, and other food. Two bar areas for the adults and an inflatable bull for kids will also be available.
"The growth of the Stampede is amazing, and with that comes growing pains. This year, dogs will not be allowed unless that are an official service dog. Campaigning is also not allowed."
Lastly, Mutton Bustin will have its qualifying event Sunday, May 7, which is required to be able to participate in the Mutton Bustin portion of the Memorial Weekend rodeo.
Tickets will be $12 for children ages 6-12 and $20 for adults. Tickets can be purchased at www.willrogersstampede.com, and a full schedule of rodeo activities can be found at www.visitclaremore.com/rodeo.
400 Veterans Parkway | Claremore, OK 74017
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