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California Rodeo Salinas inaugural Junior Rodeo attracted little ones across the state

SALINAS, CALIF. (KION-TV)- We're still a month away from the California Rodeo Salinas but on Sunday was the first-ever Junior Rodeo in Salinas, bringing in the youngest cowboys and cowgirls from across the state.

More than 240 contestants participated in the Junior Rodeo in Salinas. The ages of the contestants ranged from 3 to 18 years old, and for Brittany and Corey Walker who are California Rodeo Salinas pros, they said bringing their kids Landon and Lexi on as competitors was very important to them.

"To be able to bring our kids up in the same way we grew up is very special," said Walker

Landon who is six years old, participated in the goat tail untying competition.

"We're close by and nice to be with the community." said Landon Walker, contestant for the Junior Rodeo.

Lexi, Landon's sister is four years and she performed in two races.

The inaugural for the Junior Rodeo attracted people from different counties here on the Central Coast. There were four arenas in the event to keep the different age groups moving.

A spokesperson for the California Rodeo Salinas said their mission for the inaugural Junior Rodeo is to educate and engage the youth regarding the traditions of the American West.

"What better way to do it than have kids learn about rodeo, participate and be part of the western lifestyle." said Mindy Linquist, Marketing Manager for the California Rodeo Salinas.

The California Rodeo said they had about 50 volunteers helping out in the event. Brittany Walker said having her two little ones participate in the Junior Rodeo is reminding them to never forget where they come from.

"We also want to teach them about sportsmanship," said Walker. "We love this sport because it teaches them how to appreciate god, and country, and really what it's like to be a competitor."

The California Rodeo Salinas said they had 40 buckles sponsored to them by local businesses, each buckle was given to the young winners from each category.

Brittany, the mom of the two young participants was Miss California Rodeo Salinas in 2009.

Original Story

The California Rodeo Association has announced it'll be hosting its first-ever Junior Rodeo!!

According to officials, the event will look to nurture the next generation of rodeo stars while honoring the rich heritage and traditions of the American West. The competition will aim to educate and engage youth in the exciting world of rodeo according to the President of the California Rodeo Salinas Steve Davis.

 “We look forward to hosting our first Junior Rodeo to help grow the sport and keep western heritage alive and well in both our community and the state,” Davis said.

Buckles will be awarded to the 1st place winners in each event. Participants will be able to choose from a range of events for different age groups, which includes:

  • 3 years old and under: Stick Horse Race, Boot Race, Goat Tail Untying
  • 4 - 5 years old:  Stick Horse Race, Boot Race, Goat Tail Untying
  • 8 years old and under:  Calf Riding, Barrel Race, Pole Bending, Goat Tail Untying, Single Stake
  • 9 - 13 years Girls events: Barrel Race, Pole Bending, Goat Tying, Breakaway Roping, Team Roping
  • 9 - 13 years Boys events: Steer Riding, Chute Dogging, Goat Tying, Breakaway Roping, Team Roping
  • 14 - 18 years Girls events: Barrel Race, Pole Bending, Goat Tying, Breakaway Roping, Team Roping 
  • 14 - 18 years Boys events: Wild Beef Ride, Chute Dogging, Tie Down Roping, Team Roping
  • Family event: Team Roping

The Junior Rodeo will take place on Sunday, June 9th at the Salinas Sports Complex. Check-in will be from 7:30 am to 8:30 am, with the competitions starting at 9 am. Admission is free for all attendees, and parking information for contestants is available online.

For complete event details you can visit

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Karl Cooke

Karl Cooke is a Multimedia Journalist for KION News Channel 46

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