By Frank J. Buchman
The Kansas High School Rodeo Finals will be in Topeka again this year.
Yearend championship competition featuring the top 15 cowboys and cowgirls in all events at high school rodeos throughout the state last fall and this spring is scheduled June 2 – 7, at the R.R. Domer Livestock Arena in Topeka’s Kansas Expo Centre.
“The finals are Thursday through Saturday, with related activities the other days,” according to Suzan Adams, secretary of the Kansas High School Rodeo Association from Junction City.
Contestants are to start gathering for check-in Tuesday afternoon. The Kansas High School Rodeo Queen Pageant gets underway at 10 o’clock, Wednesday morning, June 3.
Roping and bulldogging cattle will be given test runs later in the morning with mandatory chick-in during the afternoon, and the queen contest speeches and modeling competitions are at 4:30.
Additionally, during the late afternoon, there will be a rules and logistics meeting, equipment check, welcome speeches and announcements of student officers and directors for the coming year, along with a family picnic. A cowboy-cowgirl dance concludes the evening.
Designated as Tough Enough to Wear Pink all daylong in cancer prevention and cure awareness, Thursday, June 4, kicks off with a meeting of old and new board members and scholarship interviews in the morning. There will be an academic team presentation in the evening.
Grand entry of the first performance of the first go-round, open to the public, is at 1:30, Thursday, and the second performance of the first go-round begins at 7 p.m. Awards ceremony for the first go-round follows the evening performance.
Friday, June 5, has been designated Black Shirt Day to Show Support of Troops. First and second go-rounds of the cutting competitions, open to public spectators, begin at 8 o’clock Friday morning, in the main arena. A new event this year is Reined Cow Horse, with first and second go-rounds, at 10 o’clock, Friday.
Grand entry of the first performance of the second go-round, with the public welcome, is at 1:30, Friday. Beach volley ball is set for the contestants, prior to supper and the evening performance. Second performance of the second go-round is at 7 o’clock, Friday, with awards ceremony for the second go-round following the evening rodeo.
Cutting Finals kickoff at 9 o’clock, Saturday morning, June 6, followed by the Reined Cow Horse Finals at 10 o’clock. Senior recognition, scholarship presentations and a senior slide show will be at 1 o’clock.
Coronation of the new 2015-2016 Kansas Rodeo Queen is at 6:30, Saturday evening. Drawing and presentation of the Platinum trailer, provided by Cowboy Trailer Sales for use by the winner, will be immediately before start of the grand entry for the final performance at 7 p.m.
Cowboy church is Sunday, June 7, at 9 o’clock, in the main arena, with finals and yearend championship awards presentations immediately following in Heritage Hall.
“Top four contestants in yearend standings of each event qualify to compete at the National High School Rodeo Finals, July 12-18, in Rock Springs, Wyoming,” Adams clarified.
Going into the finals, Paige Wiseman, Paola, and Kayla Olson, Coldwater, are leading as the all-around cowgirl, and runner-up, respectively in the yearlong state high school standings, while JD Draper, Oakley, and Ricky Yaussi, Udall, are the leading all-around cowboy, and runner-up, respectively.
“Our state finals will be live over the worldwide web for everyone to watch. The 3-2-1 Action Video is providing this service for us,” Adams noted.
Additional information about the Kansas High School Rodeo Association Finals, June 4-6, in Topeka, is available at www.khsra.net.