EAGLE, Colo. – The voice is smooth, the words are filled with knowledge.
Scott Grover has proven that being a rodeo announcer is more than a job to the man from Weston, Missouri; it’s a passion that matches the action inside the Johnette Phillips Arena during the Eagle County Fair and Rodeo.
“This rodeo is the total package,” said Grover, who has called the action of the annual event for each of the past four seasons. “If you want a place to come and ride in a beautiful setting with a great crowd that appreciates professional rodeo, with a committee that wants to go the extra mile for hospitality, Eagle is the place.
“(Stock contractor) Pete Carr is going to bring the best stock he owns. It’s the perfect storm to really make this rodeo great.”
It all adds up to why Eagle’s rodeo has been recognized as one of the best and why more accolades are likely heading its way. The contestants have come to learn that there’s much to appreciate about the goings-on in this picturesque mountain community.
Grover is just the orchestra leader, sitting astride his gray horse and speaking into the microphone as if it were a magical baton. He takes his cues from the local volunteers that organize the annual exposition and from the high-flying, oftentimes electric action that is professional rodeo.
He also serves as the perfect cheerleader for the large crowds that pack into the stands for each of the four performances.
“Scott is one of our favorite pieces of our puzzle, and he does an amazing job,” said Hanna Albertson, chairwoman of the fair and rodeo’s advisory board. “He’s receptive to what we want to do, and he brings us new ideas, too. We need to push each other to make the sport of rodeo better.”
It’s happening in Eagle. The crowds respond to every word he breathes, and they react to what they witness – from Gage Greer’s 3.9-second steer wrestling run to Rusty Wright’s 91-point saddle bronc ride on two-time Horse of the Year Dirty Jacket.
But there’s so much more that is involved in Eagle’s rodeo.
“One of the things that makes this rodeo so great has to be the setting,” Grover said. “There’s not a cooler arena with a river going along the outside of it, and four nights of packed stands makes it a place you want to be at in July. When you hear the roar of this crowd, it makes you want to perk up pretty quick.”
He should know; in addition to his gray mount, he travels the rodeo trail with his wife, Becky, and their two young children. Just arriving at the Eagle County Fairgrounds gets his blood flowing a little more.
“It’s just an honor to get to bring my family to Colorado in July, where the weather’s good and we get to watch great horses buck and see great contestants,” Grover said. “This rodeo’s at the perfect time of year to draw the big names here. It’s just a place we love to come to every year.”