HURRICANE — As the horse trotted around the arena, the sunlight lit up the U.S. flag as the cowgirl riding atop held it high. Those in attendance saluted and thanked the veterans in attendance on Saturday at the Hurricane Municipal Equestrian Park.

Cowboys and cowgirls mounted up and rode to raise funds for the planned Hurricane Veterans Memorial Park on Saturday, Hurricane, Utah, Nov. 11, 2023 | Photo by Nick Yamashita, St. George News

The local rodeo community came together and put on the Hurricane Veteran’s Rodeo with proceeds benefitting the in-the-works Hurricane Veteran’s Memorial Park.

“We have super people and good families that have stepped up and have said they will help with that because they want the veterans to be remembered and be celebrated,” Hurricane Mayor Nannette Billings said.

One of the rodeo co-coordinators, Rokelle Reeve, said that there were different events than the average rodeo, with local youth being the focus and stars of the show.

With a welcoming by Billings, a prayer and a beautiful song from one of the youth competitors, the cowgirls and cowboys mounted up and put their hats on. The veterans in attendance then were applauded and given a standing ovation for their service.

The highlight of the night featured two events of mutton-busting and the horse biscuit race. Other events included barrel racing, the barrel pick-up race, the flag race and a boot race.

Winners won small cash awards (donated from emcees’ pockets) and certificates for ice cream treats.

Besides the rodeo, a raffle with multiple prizes happened with the grand prize being a 1911A1 US Army .45 ACP semi-auto handgun. The firearm was donated by Alpha Z Arms, a new firearm company in Hurricane.

Jessi Dettamanti shows off her golden “Horse Biscuit Race” plaque after winning the race at Hurricane Municipal Equestrian Park on Saturday, Hurricane, Utah, Nov. 11, 2023 | Photo courtesy of Rokelle Reeve, St. George News

Billings said they have the plans drawn up for the Veterans park with current fundraising going on. Earlier on Saturday, the 1st Mayor’s Cup golf tournament was held. The local American Legion also donated $1,500 for the purpose. She said they were over half way to their estimated costs of $550,000 to build the park.

As reported earlier by St. George News, they even had a 150 ft. flagpole donated by a local businessman.

“It was a great day to have this type of event,” Billings said. “There were a lot of people not even from our city. They were just driving through town and saw we were having a rodeo, never been to a rode, wondered what muttonbusting was, excited to have their kids watch it, to have Navajo Tacos, churros and just wanted to be part of it.”

Over 200 people attended the rodeo between the fans and the participants.

“It has been a good day money-wise,” Billings said, while mentioning a couple of more $500 donations from families.

Meanwhile, the fans received a special treat as the youth competitors gave a great show. There were champions crowned, as well as mentally tough awards given as those who “fell out of the saddle,” wiped their tears and climbed “back into the saddle.”

The winner for the mutton-busting event drew cheers as she rode the sheep an extra minute, while not letting go. Reagan Robinson is also the reigning Hurricane Peach Days Rodeo Mutton-busting Champion.

Cowboys and cowgirls mounted up and rode to raise funds for the planned Hurricane Veterans Memorial Park on Saturday, Hurricane, Utah, Nov. 11, 2023 | Photo by Nick Yamashita, St. George News

The winner of the Horse Biscuit Race, Jessi Detamantti received a plaque with a golden horseshoe and gold horse dropping. A horse biscuit is a common term horse manure. Competitors race on a horse down to the other end of the arena, picking up horse manure on a paper plate and riding back to the finish line. The person who crosses first with manure on their plate wins, with fans screaming with glee.

Rodeo results:

Horse Biscuit Race: Jessi Detamantti.

Muttonbusting:  1st place – Reagon Robinson, 2nd place – Kynlie Iverson, 3rd place – Kynlie Iverson, 4th place – Remi Baeza, 5th place – Bently Thacker and 6th place – Rachel Winn.

Flag Race, ages seven and under: 1st place – Kynlie Iverson and 2nd place – Bentley Thacker.

Flag Race, ages eight-12: 1st place – Tallyn Blake, 2nd place – Brandon Stout, 3rd place – Preslie Hall and 4th place – Ellie Everton.

Flag Race, ages 13-17: 1st place – Alli Roundy, 2nd place – Erika Stout and 3rd place – Emily Stout.

Flag Race, ages 18 and over: 1st place – Rokelle Reeve, 2nd place – Dayton Hall and 3rd place – Jessi Dettamanti.

The Barrel Pick-up Race: 1st place – Emily Stout and Ammon Stout, 2nd place – Emily Stout and Kynlie Iverson, 3rd place – Dayton Hall and Bryson Hall, 4th place – Preslie Hall and Dayton Hall, 5th place – Jessi Dettamanti and Emily Teaters and 6th place – Shalyce Jessop and Kayla Jessop.

Barrel Race,ages seven and under: 1st place – Kynlie Iverson, 2nd place – Blakely McMurray and 3rd place – Trail Curtis.

Barrel Race, ages eight-12: 1st place – Tallyn Blake, 2nd place – Chloe Reeve, 3rd place – Oaklie Iverson and 4th place – Brandon Stout.

Barrel Race, ages 13-17: 1st place – Erika Stout, 2nd place – Gracie Campbell, 3rd place – Shalyce Jessop, 4th place – Bree Richardson and 5th place – McKenzie Tribble.

Barrel Race, ages 18 and over: 1st plaae – Rokelle Reeve, 2nd place – Heidi Stout, 3rd place – Jessi Dettamanti and 4th place – Taylor Nelson.

Photo Gallery

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2023, all rights reserved.