Trick riding and roping warm up the crowd at 7 p.m. followed by the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association (PRCA) sanctioned rodeo competition at 7:30 p.m. All events take place at the Fairgrounds at Stanley Park, which recently underwent a grandstand renovation that improved services and increased seating capacity.
Competitors battle in bronc riding, steer wrestling, tie down roping, bare back riding, team roping, barrel racing and, to cap off every evening, the dangerous but exciting bull riding event.
Youngsters test their cowboy skills at the popular mutton busting and calf scramble events.
The PRCA named the Rooftop Rodeo the "Best Small Rodeo of the Year" in 2009, the third time in four years it has received the honor.
The Rodeo Parade kicks off the six-day event on Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. Bands, floats, vintage automobiles and rodeo royalty parade along Elkhorn Avenue, Estes Park's main street.
Every evening before the rodeo, the Midway opens at 5:30 pm and offers delicious food offered by the Lions Club, vendors, face painting, and for the daring, the mechanical bucking bull. The PRCA
will feature its 40-foot merchandise trailer and Dodge Rodeo will display their huge (75x75-foot) interactive trailer.
On Saturday night the Rooftop Rodeo Queen and Royalty host the Queen's Dance at the Estes Park Conference Center. At 9 p.m. duded up cowgirls and cowboys will kick up their heels to country music from the Mad Cow Posse Band. Tickets are $12 per person.
Meet a million dollars worth of bucking broncs and snorting bulls up close at the "Behind the Chutes" tour. Say hello to the stock contractor, rodeo clown and the rodeo announcer. Tours start at 5:45 p.m. and passes cost $10 for adults and $5 for children ages 11 and under.
Each night, the six-day rodeo recognizes a different group. On Tuesday the Cheyenne Dandies and visiting royalty kick off the festivities. Wednesday you are urged to break out your favorite
pink duds to support breast cancer research, awareness and education on "Tough Enough to Wear Pink Night." Thursday is devoted to thanking emergency service workers and first responders while Friday is Military Appreciation Night.
On Saturday the Rooftop Rodeo celebrates our southern neighbors with Old Mexico Night, an evening of music, dancing and fun the "Old Mexico" way. Sunday night is Kids Night as the youngsters try their hand at roping, catching calves and mutton busting.
From 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, there will be Mexican dancing in Bond Park at the intersection of Macgregor and Elkhorn (Estes Park's main street) Avenues. Bring a picnic lunch and enjoy the music and festivities.
Both general admission ($17) and reserved box seat tickets are available for each rodeo performance. Tickets for children ages 3-11 are $5 and there are discounts for seniors and military. Parking is $5.
For more information on events and tickets, contact the Estes Park Events Department at (970)586-6104. The Fairgrounds at Stanley Park are located at 1209 Manford Avenue near the intersection of U.S. Highway 36 and Community Drive.