Multiple Bates County youth represented their respective schools at the opening rodeo for the Missouri High School Rodeo Association.
The MHSR is the state affiliate of the National High School Association and was formed in 1956. MHSR rodeos have contestants in both High School (9th-12th grade) and Junior High (5th-8th grade). Students can join and compete regardless of attending public, private or home school. They must maintain minimum grades for eligibility and are required to submit grade cards each spring and fall seasons.
High School contestants compete in barrel racing, pole bending, breakaway roping, goat tying, bull riding, bareback riding, saddle bronc, team roping, tiedown calf roping and steer wrestling. Junior High contestants compete in breakaway roping, ribbon roping, goat tying, barrel racing, pole bending, team roping, tiedown calf roping, chute dogging and bull riding. Both divisions feature shooting sports: High school includes trap and .22 light rifle and junior high includes .22 light rifle. This year, MSHR has added cutting to its high school division events
The season opening rodeo was held in Milan Missouri on August 27 and 28th with five Bates County students present. Each contestant is responsible for the $400 a year for association/sponsorship fees then $193 for National and State membership along with entry fees to each rodeo and divisions they sign up to compete in. Along with the fees each contestant/family is responsible for the cost of travel, lodging, rodeo gear and purchasing required dress code.
MHSR holds a total of 20 Rodeos throughout Missouri. Contestants earn and accumulate points for yearend state awards and the top four contestants in each event qualify for the National High School or Junior High Finals Rodeo, where Missouri teams will compete against contestants from 40 states and the countries of Australia, Canada, Mexico and New Zealand.
Contestants compete for titles, scholarships, prizes and added money. Competing in Milan for Bates County in the High School Divisions were 16 year old Austyn Spurgeon from Adrian representing the Adrian School in the Saddle Bronc Division. 17 year old McCray Rogers from Hume, representing the Hume School in the Bull Riding Division. 16 year old Cameron Anderson from Butler, representing the Butler School in the Bronc Riding Division.
Competing in the Junior High Divisions were 13 year old Addison Johnston competing in the Breakaway, Goat tying, Pole Bending and Barrel racing. 11 year old Cash Johnston competing in the Chute Dogging and .22 shooting. Both Johnston’s live in Merwin and represented the Miami School. To be able to attend as many of the High School rodeos this year these youth are looking for sponsors. If you are interested in sponsoring any of these youth you can do so by contacting the following.
Anthony Spurgeon at 816-237-6618
McCray Rogers at 660-464-4266
Chad Anderson at 660-200-6695
Pam Johnston 913-731-8586
(Story and pictures submitted by Bates County Sheriff Chad Anderson)