There may be a rodeo in the Lower Mainland this year, after all.
After the Cloverdale Rodeo & Country Fair was cancelled for the third year in a row, an entity called “Valley West Stampede Society” seems poised to bring rodeo entertainment to the area.
According to rodeocanada.com, Valley West Stampede Society has been approved to host a “special event” in Langley in September. (Approval is still pending for two U.S. associations, the PRCA and WPRA, that govern men’s and women’s athletes south of the line.)
Black Press Media confirmed with the Canadian Professional Rodeo Association the event has been approved, and as far as they’re concerned the rodeo is a go.
The committee contact is listed as Rich Kitos, the former vice-president of the Cloverdale Rodeo & Exhibition Association. Kitos was a rodeo board VP until he resigned in November 2021, in the middle of his two-year term. His resignation fell one month after an emotionally-charged Rodeo Association AGM in October that saw former president Shannon Claypool and former VP Dale Saip lose their bids at re-election.
Black Press Media reached out to Kitos, but he did not return calls by publication time.
Gerry Spielmacher, president of the Cloverdale Rodeo & Exhibition Association, said he has heard of the rodeo.
“My own personal thoughts are that it’ll be good if they do a good job,” he said, noting that any promotion of rodeo events can only augment the profile of the sport and help raise the profile of the Cloverdale Rodeo when it returns in 2023.
“It’s something positive. It won’t hurt us,” he said. “But we’re not involved in any way.”
The event entry on rodeocanada.com lists 4303 208th St. as the site for the rodeo grounds. That’s the location of the Langley Riders outdoor arena.
Three performances are scheduled for 2 p.m. each day, Sept. 3, 4, and 5.
The rodeo is deemed a “special event” by the Canadian Professional Rodeo Association as it will only have four events. It would need seven events to be classified as a “rodeo.”
According to Pro Rodeo Canada, Valley West Stampede Society will host four events: bareback riding, barrel racing, saddle bronc riding, and bull riding. These are the same four events held at the Cloverdale Rodeo.
The purse for each event is listed at $20,000 and the stock contractor is listed at Duane Kesler Championship Rodeo.
For more information visit rodeocanada.com.