City kids have opportunities that their counterparts in small towns and rural areas dont, but seeing farm animals generally isnt among them. The Clark County Fair Rodeo, which opens today and runs through Sunday at the fairgrounds in Logandale, can change that.
In fact, the rural feel of the Logandale area — about an hour north of Las Vegas via Interstate 15 and state Route 169 — is one of the fairs biggest draws, said office manager Shannon Zobrist.
They like the slower pace of this whole town, she said of fairgoers. For a lot of the families who come out here, their children, growing up in the city, dont get a chance to experience this type of country life and see animals. They love to bring their kids out here to see that.
And there will be lots of animals to be seen during the four-day run of the fair. Theres the rodeo, part of the Wrangler Million Dollar Tour, which will involve plenty of horses, steers and broncs as its presented each evening — not to mention some 500 cowboys and cowgirls, or rodeo athletes, as theyre known today.
The rodeo is very big, Zobrist said. Thats one of the largest in the country because it is the million-dollar tour.
But kids who watch the athletes compete and think they can only dream of their own time in the saddle actually can experience it today — that is, if the $15 slots arent all booked up, because Mutton Busting is one of the most popular events of the rodeo, and availability of the 30 daily slots is dwindling fast.
Mutton Busting? Its open to kids ages 4 through 7, and involves them riding on the back of sheep, as long as they can, Zobrist said.
The little kids get excited, she said.They watch the rodeo and see the people riding. Each day, a championship Mutton Busting winner is named and a big belt buckle is awarded.
Thats become very popular for the kids, Zobrist added. The families get really involved in that; they all come out and support them.
And then theres the Swifty Swine Pig Racing, five times daily in the fairs Pig Arena, which Zobrist said is another big hit with the kids.
There wont be any lions, tigers or bears, but kids can see lambs, pigs, rabbits, chickens, sheep, goats and steers, small animals in the Small Animal Barn and large animals in the Large Animal Barn, where kids can go in and mingle, she said.
And if animals dont get their adrenaline racing, the carnival rides are guaranteed to do just that. Zobrist said there are more than 30 rides, for kids and adults.
Add concerts, magic and other performances, traditional fair competitions and the always-interesting fair food, and its shaping up to be four days of fun.
Contact reporter Heidi Knapp Rinella at hrinella@ reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0474.