More than 4,000 people came to the rodeo on Saturday, May 14
SAN LUIS OBISPO COUNTY — The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office held its inaugural Sheriff’s Rodeo on Saturday, May 14. More than 4,000 people were in attendance.
The first sheriff’s rodeo was planned to debut in 2020 but was postponed twice to wait through COVID-19 restrictions, but it was well worth the wait.
Commander Chad Nicholson said of the event, “Everything went phenomenal. It was a huge success.”
Held in the Grandstand Arena at the Paso Robles Event Center, the rodeo was followed by a concert performance by country music duo Joe & Martina. Families and friends gathered on the rodeo grounds for to dance during the concert.
“We wanted to produce a family-filled event for the community where the community could come together and celebrate togetherness, the sport of rodeo, law enforcement, and the western way of life,” Nicholson said.
Eight different events were held at the rodeo finals: open team roping, sort n rope, #10 roping, breakaway, sorting, barrel racing, steer wrestling, and JR team roping. Contestants competed at the SLO Sheriff’s Rodeo Qualifier event held at the RCR River Ranch Arena a few weeks prior.
Seventy-five contestants tried their hand at becoming the first to win a buckle at the inaugural rodeo. Event winners were:
- Open Team Roping — Cody Mora / Dalton Pearce
- Sort N Rope — Dalton Pearce / Brinan Varian
- #10 Roping — Cody Mora / Shaylee Baxley
- Breakaway — Jaycet Tweedy
- Sorting — Joanie Ketchum, Ryan Pascoe, Chad Nicholson
- Barrel Race — Cheri Kelly
- JR Team Roping — Noah Cervantes / Trey White
When planning the rodeo, Nicholson wanted to create a modified timed event rodeo mixed with ranch roping, allowing more locals to join the fun.
Announcing the rodeo was Drew Stewart, who came out from Oklahoma to lend his voice. He was joined by Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association (PRCA) music director and announcer Taveon Harlston.
Also, during the rodeo, two North County deputies were honored for their heroism alongside their spouses.
Nick Dreyfus, who was shot in the face in June 2020 while responding to an active shooter call in Paso Robles, was honored with Richard “Ted” Lehnhoff, who was shot in the leg in a shootout at the Templeton Cemetery in September of 2020.
“We honored them for their heroism through a couple of those shootings, and those were both involved in the North County, and they are North County deputies,” Nicholson said.
Plans are already in the works for next year’s bigger and better rodeo. Attendees can expect to see the same great rodeo with some added variations and vendors.
“We want to make this an annual event, and it will be,” Nicholson said.
All proceeds for the rodeo support the Sheriff’s Advisory Foundation (SAF), which supplements the needs of law enforcement throughout the county.
Stay up to date on next year’s rodeo or to learn more about this year’s, visit slosheriffsrodeo.com