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Big-Time Rodeo is coming
to Cusseta this weekend

From the August 25, 2021 issue
of The Journal

By Richard Harris
   Normally if you want to see a true professional rodeo, you have to go to the big city. That seems a little strange, as thoughts of cowboys and cowgirls bring to mind rural areas or open ranges. So, Cusseta seems like a fitting site for such an event.
   Organizers are looking forward to hosting the first ever Chattahoochee International Professional Rodeo at 544 Broad Street, Cusseta, on Friday, August 27 and Saturday, August 28 (see ad for times and ticket prices).
   The event is being staged by the folks who have put together the huge Cobb County Rodeo since 1997. The National Guard has been using their arena due to the Coronavirus Pandemic, so they looked for another spot and settled on Cusseta. If it goes well, it will likely be the first of many to come.
   Jonathon Woodward said the "buzz" has been good and they're hoping for nice crowds both evenings. One thing's for sure, the talent will be showing up. There are many professionals registered to compete in categories including bareback riding, barrel racing, breakaway roping, bull riding, saddle bronc, steer wrestling, team roping, and tie down roping.
   Among the many rodeo veterans who will be competing is Katie Brown of Waverly, Tennessee. She is currently the No. 3 cowgirl in the Barrel Racing World Standings. That's just one example of the quality of the competition that will be on display.
   In addition to the competitors, there will be a specialty act that many will likely consider worth the price of admission by itself. The highly sought-after Tim "Wild Thang" Lepard and his Team Ghostriders and the Cowboy Monkeys will be performing. Yes, they are real monkeys who dress as cowboys with vests, chaps, and hats. However, they don't just look the part, they play it, too, by riding saddled border collies as they round up sheep. (Yes, really!)
   "We are very excited to have Tim signed up," said Woodward. "He's very hard to get because his schedule stays full."
   They've pulled out all the stops for this rodeo, even hiring professional rodeo announcer Adam Gibbs, who has a wealth of experience and really knows how to "run the show."
   In addition to all the talented and experienced folks coming from across the nation, the Chattahoochee International Rodeo will also have a very special local dignitary. Local resident Jo Jo Frost, 11, has been named as the Junior Rodeo Queen. She started "rodeoing" when she was 6 and through the years has competed in many events, including barrel racing, pole bending, and steer wrestling. She has won numerous buckles, but she is most proud of winning her very first saddle as the Youth All-Around Cowgirl last year. Her dream is to make it to the National Finals Rodeo one day.
   Organizers also recommend not arriving late, as they will kick off both evenings with a special Patriot Opening Show that they believe will be very popular.