Annual bull riding event comes to Sioux City

Local News

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – The winter weather has been a problem for weekend events. A beloved rodeo was canceled Friday due to road conditions, however the annual Barnes Bull Riding Challenge at the Tyson Events Center still put on a show Saturday evening.

“It’s a nice event to sit back and watch some cowboys,” said Kathy Lynch, an attendee.

Icy roads and cold temperatures didn’t stop Siouxlanders from coming out to the annual bull riding event.

“I’m so excited to be here. The guys are going to catch the bulls,” said Piper Marshall, an attendee.

Piper and her father, Jacky Marshall, drove all the way from Oklahoma.

“It was a long drive here, but we’re here for the rodeo-to have a good time and have a daddy-daughter night,” said Jacky.

It’s the first stop of the 2020 tour, and the Barnes family has been putting this show on since 1950.

“It’s in my blood. I was born into it and so was my brother and sister, but they didn’t catch the fever as I did,” said Marty Barnes, coordinator of the Barnes Bull Riding Challenge.

Barnes is the man behind the cowboy hat and leather boots. He’s been a part of his father’s show since he was only 14-years-old.

“I was doing the physical performance of the thing, then I ride saddle bucks for 25 years, and I guess I’ve moved on from competing and now I’m on the production side of things,” said Barnes.

The rodeo will go to over 35 events this year, however, Barnes said safety is always a top priority for his riders.

“Bull riding is like the fire drill. They say stop, drop, and roll. Same thing with bull riding. The bull riders, once they compete, they still have to jump off on the ground on their own and it’s stop, drop, and roll,” said Barnes.

Barnes plans to continue the rodeo tradition for years to come.

“Yeah, the good Lord willing, the creek don’t rise and we’re still on planet Earth, we will be back,” said Barnes.

“Yeah, we’ll probably come again. We like rodeos so, it will be fun,” said Lynch.

The Barnes Bull Riding Challenge has a long year ahead of them on their annual tour. Their next stop in February will be in Georgia where they won’t have to worry about snow. Click here for a list of their upcoming events.

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