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16 Action Packed Days that Keep Ranch Life Strong

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The sight of Texas Longhorn cattle being herded through the streets of downtown Denver can only mean one thing – the Western Stock Show is about to begin!

Stories of cattle drives, cowboys and the Wild West are intricately woven into U.S. history and tradition. The Western Stock Show held annually in Denver, Colorado has celebrated this unique heritage for the last 108 years. This year's show boosted over 640,000 attendees from all over the world.

These 16 action packed days are a cowboy and cowgirl's dream with exciting pro rodeos, horse and livestock shows, auction sales, a western art show and a spectacular trade show showcasing the latest ranching innovations, technologies, gear and apparel. It's also the home to the only carload and pen cattle show in the world!

The celebration of ranch life and the spirit of competition are what draws many families to this event. (Tweet this) Robert Fields Territory Manager for Gallagher in Oklahoma, who also raises cattle looks forward making the trip to Denver each year with his wife and daughters.

It's a great opportunity to compete in the stock arena with other professionals," says Robert Fields. "My girls have always loved preparing for the event." Brook and Brittany Fields are both members of the Guthrie, Oklahoma FFA Chapter.  They show hogs and both placed in their division classes at the Western Stock Show.

Robert says, "Showing livestock teaches them not only good sportsmanship but the value of hard work. These attributes are foundational to any successful future. I'm very proud of my girls and what they've accomplished through their persistence and grateful for shows like this that provide these opportunities."

One highlight was the mounted shooting competition. Mounted Shooting is one of the fastest growing equine sports in the world, and this event certainly attracted a lot of attention. The stands were filled to near capacity as riders from across the country came together to compete.

"I don't remember a better crowd than we had here," said Dale Klotz, a Gallagher Territory Manager for Colorado who placed as the Overall Cowboy in the Mounted Shooting competition.

For those of you that are unfamiliar with the event, riders speed through patterns marked by four feet poles that are topped with balloons. Their goal is to pop all the balloons with blanks fired from their pair of .45 cal single action pistols while completing the pattern as quickly as possible. The rider with the fastest time wins. Each missed balloon incurs a five-second penalty. Other time penalties are added for infractions.

You can learn more about this popular sport at www.cowboymountedshooting.com

Proceeds from the National Western Stock Show go to the National Western Scholarship Trust. The Trust awards 64 scholarships annually to students studying agriculture and medicine to practice in rural areas.

Learn more about the National Western Stock Show at:www.nationalwestern.com/