Rodeo made for a thrill-a-minute, action-packed Mountain Festival in Tehachapi this weekend. Local cowboys as well as PRCA contestants from as far away as Hawaii and Mexico were present, trying to last eight seconds on a twisting, bucking horse or bull in the two-day event.
Opening with pageantry and tributes, Friday night's rodeo started with a presentation honoring our men and women for their service to the country. Honored with a mule-drawn grand entry lap around the arena were Tehachapi veterans from World War II Eldon Kordes, Art Chianello and George Sandy, all now in their 90s. The nation's flag was presented on horseback by Air Force veteran Chester Chapman.
Honoring the Tehachapi Mountain Rodeo Associations Junior Rodeo program was a special, crowd pleasing display of mutton busting. Young cowboys and cowgirls came out of the chutes riding bareback on a sheep, trying to stay on for six seconds.
The night's action then switched to the main event as professional PRCA cowboys rode bucking horses, wrestled steers, and rode 1,000-pound bulls. While eight seconds is not long on a clock, many a good cowboy is unable to stay on a bucking, twisting animal the required time to earn points toward prize money at the end of each season.