There's non-stop, rip-roarin' cowboy action in store for rodeo fans July 9 through 14 at Estes Park's annual Rooftop Rodeo, a PRCA sanctioned event and one that has been recognized as the best small rodeo in the nation along with being named the top medium-sized rodeo in the Midwest. Nightly professional rodeo performances combine with Mutton Bustin' competition for the kids, a parade through downtown Estes Park and dance during the annual affair.
The 10:30 am Rooftop Rodeo Parade on Tuesday, July 8 kicks off the six-day event when entries make their way from the west end of town on Elkhorn Avenue (Estes Park's main street) to Fourth St. on their way to the Fairgrounds at Stanley Park, adjacent to Lake Estes at U.S. Highway 36 and Community Drive. The parade traditionally features hundreds of horses, marching units, hitches, cowboys and cowgirls, floats, and antique cars.
On Saturday, July 12, get out your dancing shoes and pearl-snaps for the country-western Queen's Dance where everyone dances up a storm. This annual event isheld from 9:30 pm to 1:30 am at the Rocky Mountain Park Inn & Estes Park Conference Center, with music by the Sean Curtis Band, featuring the Season 12 American Idol Contestant. Admission to the dance is free and there is a cash bar. Free local shuttle service (Silver Route) runs until 10 p.m. and taxi services are available for safe rides home.
Behind the Chutes Tours offer an exclusive behind-thescenes look at all the rodeo action and are scheduled for 4:30 and 5:30 pm each night. Tickets are $10 for adults; $5 for children three- to 11-years old, and can be purchased online. In 2013, these tours sold out each night, so get your tickets early. Groups of 20 or more may make arrangements for special tours (call 970-577-3920).
Chuckwagon Cooking offers rodeo guests the chance to sample some of the west's best down-home cooking, prepared just as it was during the old cattle drives! Nightly at 5:30, free to Rodeo spectators.
Both general admission and box seat tickets are available for each rodeo performance. General admission seats are not reserved and prices are $17 for adults and $5 for children ages 3-11. Box seat tickets are $25 for all ages when purchased for one night. Reduced rates for seniors, active military and groups are available. Tickets can be purchased online in advance.