OJC Press Release ID: 2620

Thursday, February 9, 2017


OJC Rodeo team helps at the Cheraw Exceptional Kids Rodeo
Press Release Photo
OJC Rodeo team members pose with students who participated at the 8th annual Exceptional Kids Rodeo on Feb. 7.







The eighth annual Exceptional Kids Rodeo was held Feb. 7 at the Cheraw gymnasium hosted by 7th Grade Advisement group with the help of the Otero Junior College Rodeo Team.  Forty-seven special needs students from Cheraw Schools, La Junta Primary-Intermediate Schools and Rocky Ford Primary- Intermediate schools were all competitors at the rodeo.

Students participated in specially adapted rodeo events. Astride stick horses they competed in the barrel race, pole bending and flag race. Participants also had the opportunity to learn to rope, pet a pony, enjoy baby goats, get autographs form contestants and meet local rodeo royalty.

“The exceptional rodeo has always been a way to show the local Arkansas valley special needs children the western way of life,” said OJC Rodeo coach Linsay Sumpter, “The OJC rodeo team enjoys their time with the students.  It’s a great way to give back to the community.  The smiles on their faces warm your heart and make all the hard work well worth it.”

The OJC Rodeo team plays a major role in the Exceptional Rodeo, with 20 rodeo team members to help teach the competitors the concepts of each of the rodeo events.  Many of the students partnered up with a special needs child while the others were positioned at the stations of the events they perform at the National Intercollegiate Rodeos. 

“I really enjoy working with the students, they find joy in so much. It is special to see them so excited about rodeo.  It helps to get us excited about our upcoming season,” said Rachel Jackson (Parker).

Exceptional Rodeos have been held all across the nation for many years, from junior rodeos to the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas. The events are organized as a way to introduce special needs children to the sport of rodeo, become a cowboy or cowgirl for a day, and meet the real-life rodeo cowboys and cowgirls who participate in the sport.