GUNNISON, Colo. – Cody Sosebee is a big man with a big heart and a fascinating sense of humor.
He’s been one of the premier clowns and entertainers in rodeo for more than a decade. He has been named the Comedy Act of the Year and has been selected to work the National Finals Rodeo, but he’s absolutely thrilled about making his way to Gunnison in July.
“This is going to be my first time to Gunnison, and I’m beyond excited to go there this year,” said Sosebee, who will provide his brand of comedy to this year’s Cattlemen’s Days Rodeo, set for Thursday, July 14-Saturday, July 16, at Fred Field Western Center in Gunnison. “I’ve heard about Gunnison for years, and everything I hear about it is great.
“When you have a chance to work a rodeo like that, you can’t help but get excited.”
Over its 122 years of existence, Cattlemen’s Days has built an incredible reputation for having a cowboy friendly rodeo that has amazing hospitality and a fan base that is electric during all three performances.
Much of the rodeo’s success is credited to the volunteer committee, which works within the community each year to produce the county’s biggest celebration. The group also works closely with its livestock producer, Stace Smith Pro Rodeo, which has been selected as PRCA Stock Contractor of the Year 11 times.
Sosebee has worked with the Smith firm many times over the years, including their annual appearances at the Cheyenne (Wyoming) Frontier Days Rodeo, which will take place after the conclusion of Cattlemen’s Days.
“You’re getting to walk out there with the best in the PRCA,” Sosebee said. “It’s like being asked to play pickup ball with Michael Jordan.”
Working with one of the greats is one thing, but the vibrant, yet round, funnyman is in the upper echelon of elite rodeo clowns. His award for being the best comedy act in rodeo remains special to him, but it’s not the top memory for the Arkansas man.
“My greatest honor has been getting chosen by the bull riders to work the NFR in 2017, which was followed up close by winning the Comedy Act of the Year in 2018,” he said. “I didn’t expect either one. I was an old guy in my career choice. Just walking down the hallway at the NFR and bumping into those bull riders, it made me feel good because they thought of me to help protect them at the biggest rodeo they’re ever going to be part of.
“When I run into a top-end NFR bull rider and know he took time to vote for me, that’s something I’ll have with me the rest of my life. The money’s been spent, but getting acknowledged for your craft really humbles me.”
The same can be said for working Gunnison’s rodeo. It’s a humbling honor for a champion clown.