Rodeo offers pink night bonus

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Craig Wisehart won the bareback riding title at Cattlemen’s Days in Gunnison, Colorado, a year ago. By posting the highest-marked ride on the rodeo’s pink night, he also collected a bonus. (PHOTO BY ROBBY FREEMAN)

GUNNISON, Colo. – Craig Wisehart has been to Gunnison’s Cattlemen’s Days several times over his career. He knows the PRCA rodeo’s history and its Tough Enough to Wear Pink campaign.

When he arrived in this beautiful mountain community last July, he realized the opening night was the much-celebrated pink night. Then he learned about the bonus paid out to the best scores and best times in each event for those wearing pink.

“My buddy, Tyler Ferguson, told me there was a pretty good bonus for wearing a pink tonight,” said Wisehart, who lives in Stephenville, Texas, but still calls Kersey, Colorado, home. “I told him, ‘I was silly and left all my pink shirts in Texas.’ He told me there was a Tough Enough to Wear Pink booth on the other side of the arena and to get one.

“I ran over there, and they fit me with one, and here we are.”

Adorned with the pink attire with a Gunnison logo, he matched moves with Stace Smith’s Kicking Feathers for 85 points to claim the bonus.

Any competitor who competes and wears pink attire on this year’s pink night – set for Thursday, July 11, at the Fred Field Western Heritage Center in Gunnison – is eligible for a share of the $15,000 bonus provided by Wrangler and local sponsors through the Cattlemen’s Days Tough Enough to Wear Pink program. It breaks down to $1,875 per discipline.

“For years, our thoughts as the Cattlemen’s Days committee has been to always be willing to give to our contestants, whether it’s providing our time to help, giving them hay, making sure our hospitality is top notch or doing anything they might need,” said Kevin Coblentz, president of the volunteer committee that produces the rodeo.

“This is another great thing that is available to our contestants on the first performance of our rodeo, and I think it’s great for the cowboys and cowgirls who come to Gunnison. We want them to leave here knowing they are appreciated by us.”

Many contestants that didn’t know before are learning about that giving nature. Those that arrive for the July 11 performance take note of the awesome pink setting around the rodeo arena.

“We love to see the contestants that compete that night wearing pink,” Coblentz said. “We know it’s not always feasible for them because they’re on the road so much, but it’s always nice to see them supporting the pink night we have and for all the rodeos that do something special in support of the fight against cancer.”


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