Meet the Committee 65th Annual Kingfisher Rodeo

by Rodeo News

story by Lindsay Humphrey

What was once the capital of the Oklahoma territory – Kingfisher – is now the host of a rodeo that celebrates 65 consecutive years in 2022 this August 5-6. A member of the Cross family has been involved for every single one of those years. Sherrie Cross is now co-chairman of this year’s Kingfisher rodeo and she’s been working hard to make the event something spectators and competitors alike can look forward to this August. “My dad was a founding member of the Kingfisher Roundup Club and then he helped get this rodeo off the ground in 1957,” Sherrie said. “I started looking into ways we could make our rodeo even better as early as last summer. I was going to rodeos and checking out stock contractors for various associations.”
Sherrie liked what she saw at KPRA events. The association presented their information to the rodeo committee and that was all she wrote. All this took place in February, and it’s been full steam ahead ever since. Phil Sumner of Sumner Rodeo Company has provided stock for the Kingfisher rodeo for many years, no matter if it was an open event or sanctioned by an association. “Phil always puts on a good rodeo, and he brings good stock to make sure everyone gets a fair shot. When we were looking at different associations to sanction our rodeo, it was really important that we have access to a great stock contractor. It worked out great that Phil is in the KPRA and that we have been using his company for many years.”
The Kingfisher Roundup Club is small, but mighty. Sherrie is the co-chairman of the rodeo along with Jimmy Ward who also serves as the club president. With just a handful of other members to help make this event happen, the club is actively recruiting new members. “Dorothy (Glazier) and Desiree (Smith) are in charge of the concession stand and Lacey Bailey is taking care of our queen contestants. Then we have several volunteers that help get our grounds ready – Junior Glazier, Colt Harrison, Monty McNair and Jack Leitner.” Despite their size, the club is proud to award a $1,000 scholarship to a graduating senior from Kingfisher county.
With the KPRA sanction, the committee is adding some new flare to the event. “We’re having a local dance group of girls do some entertainment as part of our pre-show – that’s new this year. And we’re trying to make this rodeo a way to kick off the school year since it’s the weekend before the kids go back.” The rodeo used to be held in June but was strategically moved to August to better accommodate harvest season. “It made sense to move it to August because in June you’re worried about overlapping with harvest because we are in a farming community. Your crowd might not be big if people are still in the field.”
Moving the rodeo to August occurred only two years ago, but it definitely proved beneficial for both the spectators and competitors. Several other rodeos will be within driving distance of Kingfisher on that specific weekend. “We tried to make sure contestants could hit our rodeo as well as several others in the same general area so they could hopefully save some money on diesel this summer.” Steer wrestlers will have a little extra incentive to come to Kingfisher this year because the committee is adding $1,000 to the big man event. And team ropers local to Kingfisher county will get the opportunity to rope for some cash over the weekend as well. “We’re close to both I-35 and I-40, so we’re easy to get to. Kingfisher has a good hotel for contestants to stay at and we have several great restaurants as well as downtown shopping with some unique stores.” Since Kingfisher was once the territorial capital of the state, they boast a governor’s mansion and museum that might be of interest to contestants and spectators.

                © Rodeo Life Media Corporation | All Rights Reserved • Laramie, Wyoming • 307.761.9053

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