The real summer show in Snowmass |

The real summer show in Snowmass

Aspen Historical Society
One color slide of a bronco rider at the Snowmass Rodeo, June 1998.
Russell; John

Going back to the early days of the Snowmass Rodeo, the 1976 summer edition of the Aspen Magazine interviewed Doug McLain, founder of the Rodeo, in the article Rodeo: True Western Grit. “At Snowmass Stables the traditional skills of the West are enthusiastically preserved in such rugged events as calf roping and bare back riding. ‘It kind of bugs me,’ says Doug McLain, owner of the Snowmass Stables. ‘Everyone is always writing about the Music Festival, and the rodeo doesn’t get any coverage. But really, it’s the biggest weekly event going on here in the summer.’” The Snowmass Rodeo started as a “practice rodeo” for many folks, according to McLain, with “between 100 and 120 contestants each week. Most of them are from Colorado, with a heavy representation from the Roaring Fork Valley. … ‘Lots of our contestants are professionals who compete here for practice,’ McLain says. Others are newcomers, trying to break into a tough sport. And of course some contestants enter for the sheer fun of it.” With over 45 years now of weekly events, the “fun” is still being had.