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Story Archives: Rodeo begins Thursday
|Rodeo begins Thursday|
This year's 51st annual Deep South PRCA Rodeo will honor two of its most ardent supporters – Mayor Jack Hammons, who will be the parade grand marshal, and the late George Johnson, in whose memory the three-day event will be dedicated.
Jeff Moore, president of the Deep South PRCA Rodeo committee, said Johnson, who died in April, was a longtime member of the committee.
The festivities begin with a downtown parade on Thursday starting at 4 p.m. The rodeo begins at 8 p.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday at the PRCA arena on Loop Road.
Hammons will lead the parade in a Dodge truck, courtesy of Dennis Crain Dodge, a major sponsor of the event. Other sponsors are Croplan Genetics, Winnsboro Equipment and Louisiana Lottery.
Moore estimated at least 300 horses and riders will participate in the parade, and, "Most of those will come to the grand entry Thursday night."
The Deep South Rodeo is part of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association Southeastern Circuit, which includes Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and Florida.
Riders in this year's rodeo will compete in seven categories, bareback riding, tiedown roping, steer wrestling, saddle bronc riding, barrel racing, team roping and bull riding. Plus there will added entertainment by rodeo clown Rudy Burns and trick rider Leann Pollock.
Two of the cowboys competing in the event will be Heath DeMoss, who was reared in Crowville, and T.J. Haney. Livestock will be provided by Scotty Lovelace, 2003 NPRA stock contractor of the year.
"This event is in the makings to be one of the best ever," said Moore, who is in his third year as committee president. Prior to becoming president in 2006, he was secretary-treasurer for five years.
Moore, a Winnsboro native, serves with other local officers Kenneth Ingram, vice president, Skipper Stinson, secretary-treasurer and Scott Fletcher, chaplain, and 18 more committee members – all of whom work the rodeo to make sure it is a high-quality family event.
On Saturday night committee members will be wearing pink shirts as part of the "Tough Enough to Wear Pink" breast cancer awareness campaign.
"The committee is asking everyone to wear pink to the rodeo Saturday night," Moore said. "At the vendor stations we're going to have a pink bucket for people to drop in what they want (as a donation for breast cancer research)."
Vendors for the three nights of rodeoing will be a concession stand run by the Apostolic Faith Chapel of Gilbert, Classic Pro Rodeo and Patton's Western Wear's bucking machine booth.
Added excitement this year will be a film crew for the cable television network RFD, which will be videoing each night, particularly women's barrel racing.
QUINTEN FREEMAN, 5, was one of the youngest riders in the Deep South Kid's Rodeo held Friday and Saturday at the PRCA arena in Winnsboro. The Deep South PRCA Rodeo kicks off Thursday afternoon with a parade through downtown beginning at 4 p.m. (See page 1B for more photos of the kid's rodeo.) (Sun photo by Monica Huff)